(WRIC) — Over the past five years, more than 5,000 people have been killed in crashes involving teen drivers during the “100 Deadliest Days.” This period starts on Memorial Day and is the period in the year where teen crash deaths historically increase.
“Each and every day during the summer driving season, an average of 10 people die as a result of injuries from a crash involving a teen driver across America,” said Martha Mitchell Meade, Public and Government Affairs Manager for AAA.
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety released a study confirming that nearly 60% of teen crashes involved distracted driving. They also saw an increase in texting and driving among teen drivers.
This comprehensive survey found the top three distractions for teen drivers leading up to a crash are talking or attending to another passenger (15%), talking or texting or operating a cell phone (12%) and attending to or looking at something inside the vehicle (11%).
“This knowledge should re-enforce the importance of a laser focus on teen driver safety among teens, their parents, educators and anyone who can impact young drivers’ behavior behind the wheel,” said Meade.
Virginia Tech Transportation Institute found that texting creates a crash risk 23 times worse than driving while not distracted.
“Nearly two-thirds of people injured or killed in crashes involving a teen driver are people other than the teen themselves. This shows that teen drivers can be a risk to everyone on the road and it is important to regulate their actions when behind the wheel.”
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety encourages parents to have conversations early and often with their teens about the dangers of distractions, introduce a parent-teen driving agreement and teach good driving behavior by example.
For more information you can turn to TeenDrivingAAA.com.