While vehicles are getting safer, there has been an increase in traffic fatalities. The 7.2 percent increase in driving deaths around the country in 2015 over the previous year can be attributed to a variety of causes, including people having more available income and driving more miles. However, in that year teenage traffic fatalities increased by 10 percent according to the Governors Highway Safety Association, and that was the largest percentage increase for any age group. Kentucky parents of teenage drivers may find this statistic to be alarming.
Teenagers are killed almost three times more frequently than other age groups in auto accidents. Distracted driving fatalities involving all age groups increased by nearly 9 percent in 2015 over the previous year. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, however, believes that crashes caused by distracted drivers are underreported. Other human factors that caused fatalities to increase in that year, although not by as high a percentage, included speeding, driving while intoxicated and failing to wear seat belts.
There are steps parents can take year round to prevent distracted driving in teenagers, and the best method is by setting a good example. Parents should never use phones while driving. They should also encourage an environment where their children are operating their vehicles free of distractions from other passengers.
By increasing awareness of the perils of distracted driving, parents can encourage their children to become safer drivers. Drivers who are free from distractions could reduce the number of car accidents around the country. However, collisions will continue to happen, and people who have been injured in one that was caused by a driver who was distracted by a cellphone or other device may want to have legal assistance in pursuing compensation for their losses.