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Teen crashes spike for the first time in a decade

A new study shows that while progress has been made in lowering teen driver traffic accidents, teens are still the most dangerous drivers on the road. In fact, fatal teen driver crashes have jumped up 10 percent this past year. This is the first time teen crashes have escalated in 10 years.

The Governors Highway Safety Association looked at a decade's worth of data from NHTSA's Fatality Analysis Reporting System. The most important aspect is that the amount of teenagers in car accidents has been on a downward trend since 2006. Efforts in teen driving safety around the nation have helped teens become safer drivers. The puzzling thing is that no one is sure why there has been a sudden raise in crashes in 2015.

Why do teens get in more accidents?

While the sudden spike in accidents seems to be a mystery, there has been research on why teenagers are more at risk for causing accidents. According to the CDC teens are more likely to:

  • Underestimate dangerous situations
  • Speed and have risky driving behavior
  • Not wear a seatbelt
  • Drink and drive

Teenagers are still developing their understanding of risk when they get behind the wheel; therefore they tend to make critical decision errors which can lead to some serious crashes.

What can we do to minimize teen crashes?

Numerous programs are available for increasing teen driver safety but studies show that safety starts at home. Parents who set driving rules and pay attention to their kids activities are shown to help teen drivers the most. Teens with supportive and guiding parents are:

  • 70 percent less likely to drink and drive
  • 50 percent less likely to get in an accident
  • Two times more likely to wear a seatbelt

Parents often have to struggle between providing guidance and becoming too restrictive. It is good to know that a healthy set of limits and guidance can reduce the risk of teens getting injured. Teens often carpool together and may still get in an accident. If your teenager has gotten injured in a car accident then you might be able to get back some of the damages you both have lost in a personal injury claim. Contact an attorney who is experienced in motor vehicle accidents.

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