Spring break for many teens throughout West Virginia means spending time hanging out with friends. All-too-often, this can lead to high risk situations in which young people are more likely to be involved in motor vehicle accidents. A personal injury lawyer knows that car crashes are a leading cause of death for teen drivers. Spring break is an especially high-risk time and parents and young people should be aware of some of the biggest risks that this vacation week presents.
Risks of Teen Driving Collisions Over Spring Break
Teens in the Driver's Seat is a peer education program designed to help teenagers recognize the risks of driving. Educational literature that Teens in the Driver's Seat provides indicates that more than 500,000 young people suffer injuries annually as a result of motor vehicle accidents. Car crashes are also responsible for 40 percent of fatalities among teen drivers.
While driver inexperience is a big reason why so many teens die in car crashes, there are five big factors that are identified as being involved in most teen collisions. These include:
- Driving drunk or on drugs
- Driving while distracted
- Driving at night
- Being in the car with no seat belt on
- Speeding or racing
A lot of these high-risk behaviors are more likely to occur during spring break. Teens who spend time with their friends over break are likely to drive around with big groups in the car. For a young driver, having peers as passengers can significantly increase the risk of a motor vehicle accident both because of the distraction factor and because they are more likely to be influenced to take risks.
Teen drinking is also a big problem over spring break. American Medical News surveyed young women about spring break and a full 83 percent said that the use of alcohol was a much bigger part of the spring break social life than it was at other times over the course of the year.
Forbes also reported on many troubling statistics about young people drinking on spring break. More than half of college kids on spring break drink. When they do, they tend to not just drink, but binge drink. The average number of drinks a young man takes per day while on spring break is 18 and the average number of alcoholic beverages a woman drinks per day on spring break is 10. This is far over the line into drinking too much, and it is likely to lead to unsafe choices like getting into the car and driving drunk or getting into the car with someone else who has consumed drugs or alcohol.
Parents of both high school and college students should know about some of the risks of spring break and should be sure to talk to their kids about how to avoid getting into situations that could have life-changing consequences. A teen who makes unsafe driving choices could hurt himself or others and could become legally responsible for the consequences of causing a motor vehicle accident.
Contact a West Virginia accident attorney at the Recht Law Offices. Call 1-800-487-8546 today for a free consultation or visit http://www.rechtlaw.com.