New teen drivers often cause concern for parents, as well as other drivers sharing the road with teens. Young people with new driver's licenses cause a disproportionate number of accidents and deaths in the United States. But, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, teen car accident fatalities are slowing down, with the number of teen deaths having dropped considerably over the last five years.
Fatalities involving teen drivers 16 and 17 years old have dropped more than 30 percent, from 2,200 in 2004 to 1,400 in 2008. While teens have access to the same training, such as basic driver's education, the lower numbers aren't because of better teenage driving. Instead, new laws aimed to protect teens from themselves have helped reduce the fatalities.
Among the laws are banning youth drivers from driving with other teens or from driving at night, which has kept them off the roads and out of danger. In fact, nearly every state has a license program that restricts teenage driving, with the most restrictive being in New York and New Jersey. Both states prohibit teens from getting their drivers licenses until they are 17, and the laws have helped them maintain the lowest teen accident rates in the country.
Recession Contributes to Reduced Teen Car Accidents
Another reason for the dramatic decline can be attributed to the recent economic recession. With less money and rising gas prices, people are watching their money. Teens either can't borrow their parents cars or don't have the money for gas.
Despite the drop in accident fatalities, parents are urged to talk to their teens about their driving, especially the use of cell phones and texting. Distracted driving is dangerous for any driver, and especially more so for a new, inexperienced driver.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a car accident with a teenage driver, contact a personal injury attorney in Florida. A lawyer will help you understand your rights after a serious car accident.
Related Resource: FindLaw "Teen Driving Fatalities Drop Sharply"