Numerous distracted driving studies have focused on distracted adult drivers. But, do teens also drive distracted? Studies show that teens do and are affected by distractions differently. Moreover, a recent study conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reported that teen distracted driving is a much bigger problem than we thought it was. The NHTSA initially estimated that distraction was a factor only in 14 percent of teen driver crashes. This study found that distraction was a factor in 58 percent of all teen crashes studied. Current advertisements address texting while driving as a major distraction, however, there are also other forms of teen distracted driving.
What Are The Most Common Forms Of Teen Distracted Driving?
In this study, researchers obtained 1,700 videos of teen drivers taken from cameras inside the vehicle and studied the six seconds prior to the crash. The following is a list of the most distracting activity by a teen driver just before the crash:
- Passengers: Interacting with passengers accounted for 15 percent of the crashes, the highest amount of teen distracted driving crashes. When teen drivers have passengers in the vehicle, noise levels increase with loud conversations and cause distraction. In addition, passengers can also cause teen drivers to drive more aggressively or show off.
- Cell Phones: Using a cell phone caused 12 percent of the crashes.
- Inside distractions: Looking at something inside the vehicle caused 10 percent of the crashes.
- Outside distractions: Looking at something outside the vehicle caused 9 percent of the crashes.
- Reacting to music: Singing or dancing to music caused 8 percent of the crashes.
- Grooming: Combing hair or applying making resulted in 6 percent of the crashes.
- Objects: Reaching for an object caused 6 percent of the crashes.
Are Teen Drivers More Distracted Than Adult Drivers?
Teens are not necessarily more distracted drivers since all drivers can be distracted. Rather, teen drivers may face the same distractions, but might not be able to manage distractions as effectively as a more experienced adult driver. There are several factors that link between teens and distracted driving. Teens are among the strongest users and fastest adopters of new technology i.e. cell phones. Additionally, distractions are a greater risk for new drivers. Teens are included in this group of new drivers and are more susceptible to distractions because they have less experience behind the wheel. Additionally, because of this lack of experience, teens have to give even more attention to completing tasks while driving. As a result, teen drivers who conduct multiple tasks while driving are not completely focusing on driving. Research also indicates that areas of a teen brain, which control important functions while driving such as judgment and decision making, are still developing. In both cases, whether young or old, a distracted driver can cause a car accident.
Speak With a Car Accident Lawyer
If you or someone you know has been in a car accident caused by distracted driver, contact one of our experienced car accident lawyers at d’Oliveira & Associates. You may be entitled to receive compensation for your medical bills, lost income and pain and suffering, among other losses. No fees are received unless you win your case. For a free (no obligation) case evaluation, call us toll free at 1-800-992-6878 or fill out our contact form online.