Motor vehicle accidents involving young people


As we all know, accidents are the leading cause of death in young people, both in the United States and the world. The purpose of this article is to review some challenges and specific risks that young drivers face while pointing out ways to reduce them.

According to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the leading cause of death among young people 10 to 19 years old in the United States is due to automobile accidents, where 70% of these traffic accidents are related to alcohol and/or speeding. In the case of accidents in which young people are involved, they occur mainly on weekends, and mainly at dawn.

The main risk factor of accidents is caused by human behavior during the teenage years. Impulsive behavior leads young drivers to act without fully evaluating the consequences. Many teens have lower-risk perception; they may believe that nothing will happen to them.

The US Highway Patrol, in coordination with the National Safety Council, takes preemptive actions to prevent motor accidents among young drivers from becoming a more serious public and safety problem.

Factors that increase the motor vehicle accident rate in young people include:

-Experience: The involvement of inexperienced drivers in traffic accidents increases at the age in which they are authorized to drive alone. Learning to drive takes time and it takes a lot of practice to become a good driver.

-Gender: Young males suffer more fatal accidents than women because they tend to drive more. Also, men have a greater tendency to take risks and seek new thrills, which contributes to dangerous behaviors.

-Men have four times more accidents than women.

-Young people who ride with friends are at a greater risk of having an accident.

-Young people are tempted to drive faster at night when there is low traffic.


-Drinking and driving

What to do to avoid car accidents?

Finding the solution to prevent car accidents in young people is not easy, but there are some measures that can help reduce the accident rate in this age group:Information: It is important that young people know the causes and consequences of car accidents.

-Road safety information: New drivers can be trained on how to become safe drivers.

-Drinking and driving: Teen drivers must be aware of how alcohol consumption, as well as drug use, can impact their ability to drive. In most states, the law prohibits driving for all adults with a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) of .08% or higher. The law is much stricter for teens.

-Use of seat belts: Passengers in a vehicle who are not wearing a seat belt can become projectiles during an accident.  For example, a vehicle impact at 30 mi/hr. is equal to a free fall from a fourth floor.

-Respecting traffic regulations and speed limits.

-Avoiding periods of non-concentration while driving such as talking on the phone, eating, applying makeup or playing loud music.

-Avoiding periods of non-concentration while driving such as talking on the phone, eating, applying makeup or playing loud music.

-Young people should only drive when they have acquired the necessary driving skills and knowledge.

Safety starts with parents

-The most responsible recommendation is for young people to learn to drive in driving schools. If possible, parents should leave the driving lessons of their children in the hands of experienced drivers and ensure that they comply with appropriate safety conditions.

-An adult must accompany a young driver until he/she has acquired the necessary skills and responsibility to drive alone.

-Restrict Night Driving: Close to two-thirds of fatal crashes that happen at night are speed related and involve teenage drivers. Hire a cab, or ride-share services like Uber or Lyft, if the young person needs to be out at night.

-If you suspect that your son or daughter could drive recklessly or at improper speeds, immediately suspend permission to use the car and also discuss the potential consequences of these behaviors.

-Be Involved. Frequently ride with your teens to be sure they’re being safe. And when you’re driving, be a good role model. Always travel at a speed appropriate for the road conditions.

Choosing the right vehicle for a young driver

It is not recommended that young people drive all-terrain vehicles, because a higher or taller vehicle may cause a rollover in the event of an accident.  Also, bigger, heavier vehicles are safer. They protect more effectively in a crash.  A Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI) analysis of insurance data shows that teen drivers are less likely to crash bigger and heavier vehicles in the first place. Small SUVs are recommended because their weight is similar to that of a midsize car.

Ultimately, the best vehicle for a young person is one with good active and passive safety features. A passive safety feature is a system that does not do any work until it is called to action. These features become active during an accident and work to minimize damage and reduce the risk of injury during the time of impact. These systems are seat belts, air bags, and the construction of the vehicle. These devices automatically deploy when the car gets into a crash.

An active safety system works to prevent an accident. These systems always stay active while you drive, and continuously work to try and keep you from getting into an accident. Most active safety features are electronic and controlled by a computer. They include traction control, electronic stability control, and braking systems. These also include advanced driver assist systems that use sensors such as forward collision warning and lane departure warning, along with adaptive cruise control.

Injured in a car accident?

If you have been a victim of a car accident, you need to be represented by one of the top lawyers representing car accident victims in Houston. The legal team of PMR Law has experience in the field of motor vehicle accidents and has the knowledge to try and help victims of these types of situations receive the compensation they deserve.

Contact our lawyers at 832-481-3427. Get in touch with us immediately so we can evaluate your case for free; we are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can also fill out a form by clicking here.

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