Teenagers look forward to turning 16, passing their driver’s tests, and getting their first cars. However, they probably don’t think about the risk factors that lead to teen crashes in Orange County and across Southern California.
Parents have a responsibility to guide their children in understanding the risks associated with driving. However, teenagers also have to understand how their own risky behaviors can mean the difference between life and death.
According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, there were 217 young drivers between the ages of 15 to 20 who died in 2008 in California, and 161 young occupants who died as passengers of other young drivers.
These numbers are significant, sadly indicating that some parents spend money on funerals as opposed to college for their teenagers.
According to the California Office of Traffic Safety, a 16-year-old driver is about 20 times more likely to be involved in a fatal car crash than an adult.
Although these statistics aren’t pretty, they are the facts. Teenage drivers have a greater chance of being involved in a fatal Orange County crash due to the following risk factors:
- Not wearing seatbelts;
- Violating traffic rules;
- Overestimating their driving abilities;
- Underestimating crash risks and potential threats on the road;
- Taking greater risks;
- Driving at night;
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs;
- Texting while driving.
Parents should talk to their kids about these potential risks, and teenagers should take a hard look at the facts, limit distractions while driving, and drive safely and responsibly.
If you have been injured in a Mission Viejo car crash or car accident anywhere in Orange County, call an experienced Mission Viejo car crash attorney at the Law Offices of John P. Burns as soon as possible at (877) 320-1338 for a free legal consultation.