As a parent, you may feel like you constantly repeat yourself when it comes to the rules you want your teenager to follow. This is a crucial time in your children’s development, and they tend to push the envelope as they strive for independence and to figure out who they are.
Once they start driving, you may have mixed feelings about it. You are proud of your teen, but also scared since the second most common cause of death for teenagers is auto accidents. You may continually warn your teen of driving dangers, but you never quite know if you are getting through to him or her. You just continue to hope he or she listens to you and comes home safely.
The risk is high
Research indicates that teenagers are three times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than other drivers. Of course, their lack of experience plays a significant role, but to make matters worse, they tend to engage in dangerous behaviors behind the wheel. One of those behaviors is texting and driving. This distraction is particularly dangerous since it requires all of a person’s senses. Consider the following statistics that make New York teens number one in distracted driving accidents and fatalities:
- 7.3% of all traffic fatalities involve a teen — that is 73 of 999 deaths
- 14.3% of all traffic fatalities involve a distraction — that is 143 of 999 deaths
- 27.4% of New York teens text and drive
To put this into perspective, the next highest number of teen fatalities is 41 out of 550 deaths, even though the percentage of teens who text and drive in that state is 28.1%. The percentage of distracted driving accidents in the number two state drops to 8.2% as well. What all this means is that New York’s teenage drivers tend to give in to distraction far more often than other states, and more of them die because of it.
If your teenager happens to be in a vehicle with a distracted teenage driver, it is possible he or she could suffer serious or fatal injuries. Your teen could end up robbed of the future all of you wished for, and you could incur significant financial losses in the aftermath of the crash. You could pursue compensation and a sense of justice by exercising your legal right to file a personal injury or wrongful death claim against the party or parties deemed responsible.