Teenage drivers are statistically the most dangerous people on the road. In 2010, seven teenage drivers died each day from injuries sustained in car accidents. If you are a parent, and you are wondering why your insurance just shot up, odds are it might be because your child just turned 16. Per mile driven, teen drivers are three times more likely to get into an accident than their counterparts over the age of 20. (Insurance Institute of Highway Safety)
Earlier this week, an Illinois court convened to hear the trial of an Aurora teen charged with reckless homicide in a deadly October car accident. According to court reports, the teen was joyriding in his father’s Chevrolet Malibu, without permission, at more than 90 miles an hour when he lost control and slammed into a home.
According to reports from the Chicago Tribune, the defendant, who was only 15-years-old at the time of the accident, was allegedly attempting to reach 100 miles an hour on the wet pavement of a local Aurora subdivision when he came to a curve in the road. Unable to turn, the Malibu hit the curb, and left the ground briefly before slamming into a local family’s garage. Of the three passengers in the car, two were injured, while the third was thrown from the vehicle, and later pronounced dead at the scene.
About 3,000 teens in the United States died last year because of car accidents, and almost 285,000 were treated in emergency rooms for injuries. While teens make up just 14% of the driving population, they account for more than 30% of vehicle injury costs among males and females. This figure adds up to a staggering $26 Billion. (Center for Disease Control and Prevention)
This accident is a perfect example of two of the most dangerous things a teen driver can do. For one, excessive speeds lead to thousands of deaths every year. Speeding cuts reaction time significantly and can lead to serious accidents no matter what age you are, but for young drivers with too little experience and too much confidence, this can be especially hazardous. Secondly, many states have recently passed laws prohibiting new drivers from carrying passengers in their car other than relatives. This is in direct response to statistics, which show that for teen drivers, carrying passengers increases the likelihood of car accidents four fold. (Safe Driving Resource)
At Levin & Perconti, we know from experience that when any driver chooses to act recklessly, whether this constitutes speeding, being distracted by passengers, or driving aggressively, it affects everyone on the road. As this accident illustrates, in rare cases, it may even cause damage beyond the road.
Our lawyers have experience handling a wide range of car accident cases, and we have won millions of dollars in car accident settlements for our clients and their families. If you think that we could help you too, please give us a call.