Our West Palm Beach car accident lawyers know that Florida teenagers (ages 15 to 19) have the highest rate of car crashes than any other age group. Of teen drivers, 17-olds are most likely to be involved in fatal South Florida car accident, and 18-year-olds are most likely to be involved in a car accident, the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles reports.
In fact, of 235,778 Florida car accidents reported in 2009, 153 teenage passengers and drivers were killed and 19,292 teenagers were injured. The Miami Herald recently reported that October was a particularly deadly month for teenage drivers with five teens dying from fatal South Florida car accidents. So far in 2010, 116 teenagers have died in Florida car accidents.
According to the FLHSMV, teen drivers make up just six percent of the driving population in Florida, but are involved in 14 percent of all fatal car accidents. To address what many consider an “epidemic” of teen deaths due to car accidents, each year the Florida Sheriffs Association in partnership with State Farm Insurance and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration join forces to promote and observe National Teen Driver Safety Week. This annual initiative involves a host of press conferences held at area high schools during late October that aimed to educate teen drivers and their families on how to stay safe on the road. Those efforts will continue through the holidays.
The NHTSA promotes many strategies to help teens make better – potentially life-saving – decisions while behind the wheel, and offer a handful of simple talking points for families:
~ Push a no drinking-and-driving message. Nearly 25 percent of drivers aged 15 to 20 killed in fatal car accidents had a BAC level of .08 or higher.
~ BUCKLE-UP, period. Of 4,842 teenage vehicle occupants aged 16 to 20 who were killed in fatal car accidents in 2006, nearly 60 percent – or 2,813 – were not wearing a seat belt at the time of impact.
~ Encourage younger and inexperienced drivers to participate in the Graduated Driver Licensing program. Following the GDL guidelines that gradually relax restrictions for younger drivers as they garner more and more diverse experience behind the wheel comes with a 20 to 50 percent drop in the likelihood that a teen driver will be involved in a serious car accident.
The South Florida car accident attorneys at Freeman & Mallard have been successfully and aggressively representing car accident victims and their families in Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, and Ft. Pierce /Port St. Lucie for years. Call us today to schedule a no-obligation appointment to discuss your case at 1-800-529-2368.