New Study Finds That Fatal Accidents Involving Teens Continue to Rise

teen driver

A new recent study shows that fatal accidents involving teens continues to rise.

Another new study should end any complacency that parents or California transportation safety agencies have been feeling about teen safety. The study released by the Texas A&M Transportation Institute clearly indicates that the risk of being involved in a fatal accident for teen motorists and passengers has actually increased over the past decade.

The report is titled “Are Teens Safer on the Road than They Were 10 Years Ago” and in the report, the researchers analyzed fatal accidents involving teens between the age of 13 and 17 over a decade-long period.

They then compared these crashes with other accidents involving young adult drivers between the age of 18 and 24 to develop a relative risk index.  The researchers found that the risk for teenage drivers driving with a single teen passenger increased over the last decade from a score of 3.7 to 5.1. That means that in 2011, novice drivers  had a five- times increased likelihood of being involved in a fatal accident, compared to young adult drivers during the same period of time.

Those risks increased significantly when novice drivers were driving with two or more passengers. When these young teenage drivers were carrying more than two passengers in their car, the risk was approximately 7.7, an increase of 5.9 just 10 years ago. Teenage drivers driving with two or more passengers were approximately 8 times more likely to experience or be involved in a fatal accident compared to young adults.

The researchers are pointing to a number of possible reasons for the spike. These reasons include an overall lack of experience involving young teenage drivers and the natural learning curve that is associated with operating a car. Besides, teenage drivers may be susceptible to feelings of invincibility, and may lack the understanding of the very serious consequences of being involved in a car accident.

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