Many people think teenage drivers are much more dangerous than drivers their own age. Yet, we were all teenagers once. Is there a reason behind the thinking, or is it similar to how some adults complain that teenagers’ tastes in music and fashion are awful?
Reports show teen drivers have the highest crash risk of any age group, and the younger they are, the more dangerous they are. 16-year-olds are one and a half times more likely to crash in their first few months of driving than someone passing their test at 18 or 19.
Why is this?
Here are some reasons that might explain this:
A lack of experience: Drivers learn from their near misses. The time you narrowly avoid a driver reversing out of their driveway without looking or are almost hit by a truck that is buffeted sideways in strong winds are learning opportunities. New drivers have had fewer of these, so they are less likely to make the correct decision when faced with such a situation.
A tendency to drive too fast: Teens were more likely to speed than any other age group. It was a factor in 80% of teen crashes involving no other vehicle.
An unwillingness to slow for others: 40% of teen collisions with another vehicle were because the teenage driver failed to yield.
Following too close: Teens were again more likely to do this than others
Using their phones: 40% of teen drivers admitted to having sent messages or emails in the previous month while at the wheel.
When teenage drivers get it wrong, they often injure others in the process. You’ll need legal help to pursue injury compensation if it happens to you.