New York teens relish the days between Memorial Day and Labor Day. It’s a time for fun in the sun, relaxing by pools or the ocean and just enjoying the outdoors. This time period is also known as the “100 Deadly Days of Summers.” According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, these 100 days are the deadliest for 15- to 20-year-old drivers in the U.S.
Motor vehicle accidents send an average of six 16- to 17-year-old drivers to New York hospitals each day. During June, July and August, 16- to 17-year-old drivers are more likely to be killed or seriously injured in motor vehicle accidents. One reason for this is because teen drivers often have several other teens in their vehicles, which leads to distracted driving. Another reason is because seat belt use for this age group is much lower.
Driver error is the cause of almost half of accidents involving teen drivers, according to a Center for Injury Research and Prevention study. Some of the driver errors include driving too fast for the condition of the road and a lack of “scanning skill,” which allows drivers to assess the environment. Cellphone usage while driving and driver inexperience are also contributing factors.
In New York state, teen driver deaths during the 100 days account for 30 percent of all teen driver deaths. More than 66 percent of fatal accidents involving teen drivers ages 16 to 17 are not fatal to the driver.
Motor vehicle accidents caused by teen drivers can be dramatically reduced with graduated driver’s licensing laws. Those who are injured or the families of those who are killed in an accident with a teen driver have a right to seek compensation from the responsible party. In some cases, this may include the parents of the teen driver. Any questions you may have about teen drivers and car accidents can be answered by an experienced personal injury attorney.
Source: NY Department of Health, “100 Deadly Days of Summer for Teen Drivers: Teen Driving Safety Toolkit,” accessed June 19, 2015