For many young people, getting their driver’s license and their first car are a significant source of opportunity and freedom. Unfortunately, because young drivers do not have as much driving experience as others on the road, they may make dangerous mistakes while driving.
What driving mistakes are more common among young drivers?
1. Young drivers are more prone to speeding
Young people speed more often than drivers in other age groups, putting them at a higher risk of accidents as a result. In fact, speeding is a factor in nearly 1 in 3 fatal crashes involving teenage drivers. This can occur for many reasons, including inexperience making it difficult for young drivers to gauge how much to slow down in difficult driving conditions.
2. Younger people may not keep their cars in good condition.
Whether it’s because they purchased an inexpensive, older used car or because they do not yet understand the importance of car maintenance, young drivers may not keep their car in good condition. This wear or lack of maintenance can lead to system failures, sometimes when the car is on the road.
3. Phone usage while driving is more common among younger people.
Many young drivers use their phones to stay connected with friends and classmates—sometimes behind the wheel. While taking their eyes off the road for a moment may not seem particularly dangerous, the distraction caused by adjusting a navigation app or checking a text on their phone can take drivers’ attention from the road when they need it most. While this has improved in recent years, cell phone usage while driving is still most common among drivers under the age of 24.
While staying aware of these risks can protect teen drivers from many accidents, not every car crash is preventable. If a young driver in your life was harmed by a car accident, you may want to explore your legal options to ensure that they have the support they need to recover.