Summer is officially in full swing! It is one of the most popular seasons for traveling, vacationing, visiting friends, and going anywhere there is warmth and sunshine. If you are a parent of teenagers, they will no doubt want to take road trips with friends. This is a rite of passage for many teens and something they eagerly look forward to doing once getting their licenses.
It’s important to remember that accidents can still happen when we least expect them. Parents and teens alike should know about the “100 deadliest days of summer” to ensure the safety of everyone on the road.
The 100 Deadliest Days of Summer
It is a phrase that refers to the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day. During that time, car accidents involving teens rise considerably. In fact, statistics show that, during this period, 260 teens lose their lives each month, a 26% rate increase as compared to other months of the year. It’s also important to note that 60% of teen crashes during these months owe to distracted driving and that 36% of such crashes occur between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m.
Factors Contributing to Teen Summer Car Crashes
The reality is that most teen drivers don’t have the years or decades of experience driving that many other adult drivers have. Even if your child is in their final year of high school, they probably have only been on the road for 2 years at most. Their lack of experience, feelings of invulnerability, and encounters with various forms of peer pressure put teens at a higher risk of being involved in car accidents than adults, especially during summer months. The most common causes of teen summer crashes include:
1. Speeding or Reckless Driving
In 35% of accident cases involving teen drivers, the teen was speeding at the time of the incident. Reckless driving is especially prominent among young men as well.
2. Distracted Driving
Distractions while driving are considered anything that takes the driver’s hands, eyes, or mind off the road. Something like texting and driving can easier do just all 3 of those things. Other distractions include playing music, using a GPS navigation system, or eating/drinking. Even having a simple conversation with a group of friends while driving can take a teen’s focus from the road and increase their risk of getting into an accident.
3. Driving Under the Influence
While teens are certainly not the only demographic to drive under the influence, more teens do so during the summer months after leaving parties or other summer celebrations with alcohol or drugs involved.
How to Protect Your Teen
Make sure your teen knows the rules of the road by speaking to them early and often about the inherent dangers of driving and ways to stay safe. You should also be an example to your teen by minimizing risky behavior when you drive. Remind your teen to always use their safety belt and limit the number of friends they have in the car when they drive.
If you or a loved one is injured in an accident due to another driver’s negligence, do not hesitate to contact a Chicago personal injury attorney for help protecting your family’s rights to fair and just compensation.
Contact Panio Law Offices at (708) 928-8680 for a free consultation to discuss your case.