Many parents with teenage drivers are concerned about their children’s safety. After all, motorized vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death for teenagers in the United States.
As summer approaches, it is good to be reminded that the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day is considered the most dangerous times for teen drivers. During the “100 deadliest days,” teen traffic fatalities can be 14% higher than at other times of the year. Here are a few contributing factors to why this is the case.
In the summer, children are off school, which means they have more unsupervised time. Teenagers may use their new ability to drive to their advantage by going out with friends, spending late nights in town and other fun activities. However, their increased time on the road coupled with their inexperience leads to an increase of teen crashes in the summer months.
Great weather may cause teenagers to take greater risks while driving. Without winter conditions to contend with, they may be more confident speeding or taking turns at high speeds. Your children may also just be more excited to drive around with friends with the windows down and the music cranked up. This may lead them to be less attentive behind the wheel.
Some of our fondest memories may be associated with long summer nights. But driving at night can greatly increase the risk of an accident, especially for teenagers. Data shows that the fatal crash rate of 16-year-olds is nearly twice as high at night.
Preventing the worst
As a parent, you never want to think about your children getting into a catastrophic car crash. As summer vacation approaches, you should talk to your children about safe driving practice and continuously remind them to always practice these habits. Studies show that teens whose parents engage with them over the topic of safe driving tend to be less likely to engage in risky behavior.