On Monday, we begin the “100 Deadliest Days of Driving” as accidents increase by 15% for teens from Memorial Day until Labor Day. While car accidents are the leading cause of death for teens, it becomes even worse for the summer months. According to AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, for 16-17 year olds, every mile on the road means 4 x the risk of an accident and 3 x the likelihood of having a fatal crash. By having a passenger in the car, a teen driver is 44% more likely to have an accident and that number increases with each additional passenger. (Please see our blog on Intermediate License rules regarding when a teen is allowed to have a non-family member passenger).
In the Witt household, our 15 year old recently acquired his learner’s permit and it has us a little anxious. How did this day come so quickly? And, why does my heart skip a beat every time I read, “auto accidents are the number one cause of death for teens”? Surely, our child will be careful, right? I realize that many of the parents who lost teens in accidents probably thought the same thing. The truth is that the teen brain just isn’t all the way “cooked” yet when it comes to impulse control and other important neuro-cognitive developmental milestones.
As parents of a new driver, we want to remind all drivers in our community to be aware that we have more inexperienced drivers on the road this time of year. Be cautious. Be patient. Teen drivers are out driving to see friends and head to summer jobs. They are putting more miles on the road and trying to develop driving skills.
Discount Code For Defensive Driving Program
In an effort to increase the odds that all of our children make it home safely, the Witt Law Group PS asked an online defensive driving program to offer a discount to those people reading this article. The program is called teenSmart and can be found at teensmartdriving.com. They have offered us a discount code WLGTS (for Witt Law Group Teen Smart). We get nothing in return and receive no money if you elect to use their services. However, they did mention that there are many insurance companies offering discounts if you complete the program. You need to call your insurance company and ask if this program qualifies.
You can also take a look at teendriving.aaa.com for more suggestions on talking with your teen about their driving risks. They have yet to put out a teen-specific defensive driving course in Washington (hence, why we reached out to the online program teenSmart) but are pushing for more awareness of teens’ accident risk.
We love to help clients with auto accidents but we don’t want you to need us! We certainly don’t want to see a young person face such challenges. Please give us a call if you have any questions regarding this post or have trouble locating the referenced cites.
Stay safe and have a great summer!