Biggest Safety Risks for Teen Drivers in Florida

Teen drivers may not make up the largest age group of motorists involved in car accidents, but they do have an impact on the statistics. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV), there are 140 fatalities every year among motorists aged 20 years and younger. Plus, another 14,070 teen motorists suffer varying degrees of injuries, from incapacitating to minor. Considering their young age compared to others on the road, you can guess that there are unique risk factors with teen drivers. 

It is useful to know these risks as the parent of a young driver, as you can use your authority to reinforce important safety rules. You can also benefit as a motorist who shares the road with teens. You should discuss legal options with a Miami car accident lawyer if you were hurt, and read on for some helpful details about the risks.

Teens and Inexperience 

Driving requires practice and skill, two qualities that younger motorists have not yet amassed in their short driving careers. While working to get their driver’s license, teens are required to gain experience through practice with parents, including nighttime driving. However, even when teens use all safety measures, their inexperience can cause accidents. They have not yet endured difficult traffic patterns and unexpected maneuvers by other motorists.

Peer Pressure Among Teen Drivers

Many teens see themselves as more attractive or outgoing when they take risks to impress friends. Due to pressure from friends, a younger driver seeking attention may speed, make unlawful lane changes, or violate traffic laws. These acts increase the risk and may even crossover into reckless driving, a Second Degree Misdemeanor in Florida.

Cell Phone Use

Teens rely on their phones just as much as adults, so they may find their devices difficult to put down. Younger drivers do not see the danger in picking up the phone to read a text, reply to a message, or scroll through social media. However, any of these activities is the equivalent of driving 55 miles per hour for the length of a football field while blindfolded.

Other Distracted Driving

Besides cell phone use, other forms of distracted driving present potential risks. Some of these activities are also common among teen drivers. The threat of serious traffic collisions increases because the motorist’s visual, manual, and cognitive abilities are limited while focused on some other activity. Motorists threaten the safety of all road users when they:

  • Interact with a GPS;
  • Put on makeup or groom hair;
  • Eat or drink;
  • Adjust the radio;
  • Converse with friends; and,
  • Play or interact with pets.

Discuss Remedies with a Miami Car Accident Attorney 

Though teens carry unique risks when behind the wheel, there are threats all around you from every age group. If you were injured in a crash, it is important to exercise your legal rights and seek the compensation you deserve by law. Gerson & Schwartz, PA, will help with the process, so please call (305) 371-6000 or go online to schedule a free consultation. A Miami auto crash lawyer can provide additional details.

Florida Justice Association
The National Center for Victims of Crime
outh Florida Legal Guide
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