Connecticut recently entered Phase 2 of its reopening plan following a decline in COVID-19 cases. This includes a reopening of gyms, nail salons and restaurants. Indoor gatherings can occur at a capacity of 25 people, and outdoor gatherings at 100 people.
As Connecticut starts to transition back to somewhat normal, more people will start traveling again, including teen drivers. Since teen drivers don't have years of driving experience, they are more likely to be involved in crashes than most other drivers.
According to AAA, Phase 2 of Connecticut's reopening plan comes in the midst of the "100 deadliest days" for teen drivers. This period starts on Memorial Day Weekend and runs through Labor Day Weekend.
Dangerous habits of teen drivers
Dr. David Yang is the Executive Director of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. He reveals staggering data regarding the risky driving behavior of teen drivers and the likelihood of crashes involving drivers ages 16-17.
“The last decade of crash data shows that teens continue to be over-represented in crashes and summertime marks an increase of fatal crashes for this age group,” said Dr. Yang. “Our data analysis has found that for every mile driven, new teen drivers ages 16-17 years old are three times more likely to be involved in a deadly crash compared to adults.”
Teen drivers ages 16-18 were surveyed in the AAA Foundation Traffic Safety Culture Index about their driving habits within the last 30 days. Approximately 72 percent admitted to doing the following:
- Speeding in residential neighborhoods at 10 mph over the posted speed limit — 47%
- Speeding on major highways at 15 mph over the posted speed limit — 40%
- Texting while driving — 35%
- Failing to stop at a red-light — 32%
- Driving aggressively — 31%
- Drowsy driving — 25%
- Not wearing a seatbelt — 17%
How can parents encourage safe habits for teen drivers?
AAA has offered some tips that parents should consider to help prevent crashes involving teen drivers:
- Discuss the risks of distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding, and other dangerous habits with teen drivers.
- Lead by example and avoid engaging in risky driving behavior.
- Establish a parent-teen driving agreement and implement rules.
- Spend at least 50 supervised hours with your teen and practice safe driving methods.
AAA has released the Coaching Your New Driver – An In-Car Guide for parents. This guide provides several important tips on how parents can help teens develop safe habits while driving.
Fairfield County attorney helping crash victims and their families
Vishno Law Firm urges teen drivers to stay safe this summer. Should you be involved in a crash due to someone else's negligence or reckless behavior, our legal team can help you get the compensation you need to pay for medical expenses, lost wages and other damages.
To get started, contact us for your free legal consultation. We serve clients in Fairfield County and throughout Connecticut.