Teen Driving Risk Awareness
Sixteen- and 17-year-old drivers have the highest crash rates of any age
group. Crash rates are highest during the first six months of licensure without
supervision. The major reason for crashes among newly licensed drivers is the
failure to search effectively for potential risks. The most critical time for
parents to be involved with young drivers is during the first six months of
Our culture tends to view teens as young adults when,
neurologically, they are only large children. The area of the brain that
regulates logic and reasoning develops before the area that controls impulse and
emotion. Young drivers often do not have the full capacity to control impulses.
As a result, adults need to provide guidance, oversight and set limits.
immaturity combine to make young drivers especially at-risk in five
Driving is more difficult and dangerous at night for everyone, but
particularly for teenagers. Young drivers have less experience driving at
night than during the day, and drowsiness and alcohol may be more of a
factor at night.
alcohol: Young drivers' inexperience with both driving and drinking means
that they have a higher crash risk at all bodily alcohol content levels than
passengers: Teenage passengers can distract young drivers and encourage them
to take risks.
Seat belts reduce the risk of injury or fatality in a crash, but teenage
drivers and passengers have lower belt use rates than older drivers and
cell phones: All drivers are at higher risk when talking or texting;
however, young drivers use cell phones more frequently than older drivers
and have more difficulty handling distractions.
-Countermeasures That Work, NHTSA 2011
Youth Traffic Safety Statistics - National Highway Traffic
Safety Administration (NHTSA):
crashes are the leading cause of death for teens in the U.S.
2009, 3,349 teen passenger vehicle occupants, age 16 to 20, were killed in
motor vehicle crashes, and 56 percent (1,880) were unrestrained at the time of
the fatal crash.
According to the
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, teenage drivers and
passengers are among those least likely to wear their safety belts.
In 2009, 33
percent of the young driver's age 15 to 20, who were killed in crashes had
a bodily alcohol content of .01 or higher.
Adults Age 16-20 - 2010 Michigan Traffic Crash Facts:
(16-20 years old) were killed in motor vehicle crashes, including 53 (8.9%)
drivers. The 16-20 age group accounted for 10.7 percent of all traffic
10,652 teenagers and young adults were injured in motor vehicle crashes.
521,467 licensed drivers ages 16-20 who represented 7.4 percent of
Michigan's active driving population, yet the drivers in this age group
represented 12.9 percent (60,721) of drivers in all crashes and 11.1 percent
(147) of drivers in fatal crashes.
younger drivers were involved in more shoulder/outside curb crashes and had
a higher incidence of speeding, overturn, inability to stop in assured clear
distance, collision with a ditch, and hitting a tree. They were less likely
to be alone in their car at the time of the crash.
young adults had the highest incidence of fatal crashes when their speed was
had a higher involvement of teen and young adult drivers in all crashes when
compared to older drivers.
young adults accounted for 6.9 percent of the pedestrians killed in Michigan
in 2010, and 14.1 percent of all pedestrian injuries.
Two (6.9%) of
the 29 bicyclist deaths in 2010 were in the 16-20 age group.
www.Michigantrafficcrashfacts.org for more Michigan crash facts.
Segment 2 Driver Education - Risk Awareness
The Segment 2 driver education curriculum objectives are
centered on risk awareness (including distractions and aggressive driving);
avoiding alcohol-involved driving; and driver and vehicle actions. The
Segment 2 Driver Education Risk Awareness
materials are used by driver education programs to teach teens about these
You Are At Risk (SOS-213)