Car crashes are the number one cause of death for teenagers. And according to AAA, the deadliest days of driving for teens are the 100 days between Memorial Day and Labor Day. With teens out of school, they are on the roads much more and often have other passengers in their vehicles with them. Below are some statistics for teen drivers in Tennessee and some tips on how to keep your teenager safe during this peak accident time.
First, let’s look at teen driving statistics for some Tennessee counties. Listed below are the counties with the highest young driver (ages 15-24) crash rate rank for 2014 and the number of crashes for each county:
- Davidson – 9,475 crashes
- Shelby – 12,347 crashes
- Putnam – 1,306 crashes
- Rutherford – 4,858 crashes
- Hamilton – 4,681 crashes
- Madison – 1,368 crashes
- Washington – 1,640 crashes
- Knox –5,527 crashes
- Bradley – 1,340 crashes
- Sevier – 1,206 crashes
The crash rate rank takes into account the number of young driver crashes in relation to the number of licensed young drivers. This explains why Davidson County had fewer crashes than Shelby County but a higher crash rate rank. And, of course, not surprisingly, all of these counties are home to universities and colleges which increases the number of young drivers in the county.
So, there are the numbers, now what can you do to help keep your teen driver safe. Below are some tips:
- It starts with you. If you want your teen driver to wear their seatbelt and not use their phone while driving etc., then it is important for you to set a good example.
- The best way to clearly convey your safe driving expectations to your teen is to put them in writing. The internet is full of driving contracts. Check AAA, most of the auto insurance company websites, etc. for one to use or create your own after reviewing some of them.
- Enforce penalties for failing to use safe driving practices. If your teen pulls up without his seatbelt on, then revoke his driving privileges for a while. If your teen gets a speeding ticket, revoke her driving privileges for a while.
- Use technology to your advantage. Apps are available which will automatically reply to texts and send incoming calls directly to voicemail if the vehicle is in motion. Technology also exists in the form of apps and plug-ins which will alert parents if the vehicle is outside a pre-determined area. The same feature will also alert parents if the vehicle is driven over a predetermined speed.
- Limit the number of passengers your teen is allowed to have in the car. Studies prove more people in the car increases the distraction level of the teen driver and the teen driver is more likely to drive aggressively (show off) with other teens in the car.
Watching your teenager pull out of your driveway is a scary feeling. So do what you can to keep your young driver safe on the roadway. And if an accident does happen, give us a call. One of our top-rated injury attorneys will review your case, answer your questions and walk you through your legal options in a free, no-obligation consultation. We handle all accident cases on a contingency basis so we only get paid if we win. Call us at 615-742-4880 (Nashville) or 615-867-9900 (Murfreesboro) or 866-812-8787 (toll-free). Or, if you prefer, contact us online.