Teen drivers get in more accidents than drivers in any other age group and, sadly, car accidents are always a top cause of death for teen drivers year in and year out. Unfortunately, teens present a risk to themselves and others as a result of their inexperience and because they can be prone to making dangerous decisions.
Our Galveston car accident lawyers know that one of the dangerous decisions often made by teenagers is the choice to exceed the speed limit. When a teen drives too quickly, he increases the chance of losing control of the vehicle or otherwise becoming involved in a wreck. Cars moving at higher speeds have more momentum, hit with more force and are more likely to cause serious or even fatal accidents.
Now, a recent study shows that speeding is a cause of about 33 percent of all fatal teen driving collisions.
GHSA Cautions That Speeding a Top Cause of Teen Wrecks
The Governors' Highway Safety Association recently issued a detailed report called "Speeding-Related Fatal Crashes Among Teen Drivers and Opportunities for Reducing the Risks." The report took a close look at the impact of speeding on teen car accident fatalities.
According to the GHSA's report, approximately one-third of all deadly teen auto accidents occurred in whole or in part because the driver of the car was traveling too fast for road conditions or going faster than the posted speed limit. The 33 percent of crashes attributed to speeding reflect a three percent increase from the number of fatal crashes in 2000. In 2000, only about 30 percent of deadly car accidents involving teens listed speeding as a cause.
While a three percent rise in the fatal accident rate might not seem like a lot, the number becomes much more significant when viewed in light of the fact that the overall teen car-accident fatality rate has declined during the same time period. This means that the number of speeding-related accidents increased at the same time as the overall number of accidents decreased.
Protecting Teens from Speeding-Related Accidents
The only way to prevent car accidents caused by speeding teens is to prevent young people from going too fast in the first place. This is easier said than done since teens can sometimes make dangerous decisions when behind the wheel.
Stopping teens from speeding needs to involve a comprehensive effort , including both education and enforcement of speeding laws. Parents need to talk to their kids about the risks associated with driving too fast and young people need to be informed about how dangerous speeding really is.
Graduated licensing laws that limit night driving and restrict the number of passengers in the car with teens can also help to reduce speeding risks;. the GHSA indicated that having more drivers and driving at night were both factors that increased the chances of a speeding-related wreck.
If teens understand the true risks associated with speeding and if the laws do everything possible to prevent young people from making dangerous driving choices, hopefully lives can be saved.
If you have been injured in a car accident, contact Hagood & Neumann at (800) 632-9404. Offices in Houston and Galveston.