Driving is a complex skill that requires your undivided attention. Being distracted and looking away or removing your hands from the wheel for even a few seconds significantly increases your car accident risks and puts others on the road in danger of serious personal injuries. South Carolina has made strides in becoming more aggressive in its handling of distracted drivers over the years. While this has served to reduce crashes caused by activities such as using cell phones and texting, teenagers are one age group that continues to put themselves at risk.
Study Focuses on Distracted Driving Among Teens
An April 2019 SafeWise study aimed to determine whether distracted driving laws and public education efforts were working to reduce the number of car accidents that occur each year. The conclusions they made after pouring over mountains of data and tens of thousands of traffic reports indicate that teens are still among the most likely age group to engage in distracted driving behaviors. The study also showed that South Carolina was one of the states in which teen drivers were most at risk of being involved in distracted driving accidents. These types of collisions can involve any of the following:
Talking on cell phones
Sending and receiving texts
Taking photos or videos
Checking in on social media sites
Changing stereo or GPS settings
Juggling food and beverages while driving
Turning to talk to other passengers in the vehicle
According to SafeWise, roughly one out of every ten car accidents involves distracted driving. These types of accidents fatally injure an average of 1,000 people each day throughout the U.S. While South Carolina has gotten stricter over the past several years by initiating a texting ban, they are only one of a handful of states that continues to allow drivers to be in possession of handheld devices behind the wheel. In SafeWise’s survey, it appears this approach is not working in preventing car accidents. South Carolina ranks third overall when it comes to deadly distracted driving accidents, with teens making up roughly 20 percent of the victims.
Factors That Put Teen Drivers at Risk
Distracted driving is dangerous for drivers of any age, but it can be even more so for teen drivers. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), teens are already more likely to be involved in potentially deadly crashes and collisions than drivers of other age groups. Factors responsible for this include:
Teens lack the maturity older drivers generally possess, making errors in judgment more likely.
Teens have less experience behind the wheel and may not know how to respond to sudden changes in traffic conditions or emergency events.
Teens are less likely to wear seatbelts or to take other safety precautions.
Contact Us Today for Help
At the Surasky Law Firm, LLC, we encourage all drivers to pay close attention when behind the wheel. When a crash or collision does occur, contact our Aiken, SC car accident attorney. Request a consultation to discuss how we can help you get compensation.