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Surviving summer: Teen drivers

As schools across Connecticut are taking a break for the season and warmer temperatures take families on trips to the beach or on a road trip to visit family, many heave a sigh of relief that summer is here. Yet for parents across the state, the fun in the sun can turn to terror as new reports show that teen drivers are at risk.

As the CT Post reports, the 100 days between Memorial and Labor days are when teen drivers are most at risk to be involved in a fatal car crash. Compared to those over the age of 18, these drivers are almost four times as likely to be in a car crash. Several risk factors are involved, including speeding and distraction due to phone use, which in crashes with teen drivers are even more prevalent. As CNN reports, distraction caused by passengers in the car is especially significant for teen drivers. Teens who are driving with at least one passenger have a 44 percent higher chance of dying in a car crash. This statistic is the reason many states have changed the laws for young drivers to restrict who can ride along in their vehicles.

With more time off from school in the summer, teens have the free time to ride around with friends, which can account for some of the increase in fatal crashes. Experts caution parents to talk to their young drivers about distracted driving, both from phones and from friends riding along. Practicing driving with teen drivers is paramount for parents, as is making sure they understand how serious the consequences of a car accident can be.

 

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