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Study proves summer months deadliest for teen drivers

Auto accidents involving teenage drivers are at an all-time high. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motor vehicle accidents today are the leading cause of deaths among U.S. teens. Further, the Centers for Disease Control indicate that teens are three times more likely to be in car accidents than those ages 20 and older.

And, according to a new study, this statistic may be even higher during the summer months.

Specifics of the study, an online source that provides information for new drivers and parents, examined car accident data compiled by the NHTSA from 2005-2011. The data revealed that over 27 percent of all motor vehicle deaths occurred during the summer months of July, August and September. July, in particular, had the highest fatalities.

About 75 percent of accidents were caused by driver inexperience, speeding, failure to yield to the right of way, failure to follow traffic signals or distracted driving behaviors.

Reasons behind the statistic

According to a spokesman for the American Automobile Association, car accident fatalities may increase for teens during the summer months because they likely have less supervision than while they are in school.

Another reason could be that many more teen drivers are on the roadways during summer months because they aren’t in school. And more teen drivers increase the potential for more auto accidents.

Additionally, the increased use of mobile devices behind the wheel may be another reason. Texting while driving and other dangerous distracted driving behaviors have become a huge problem in the United States. Coupled with inexperience driving, more and more accidents have occurred.


Many people have started to take proactive measures to mitigate teen driving accidents. To date, all 50 states have also passed Graduated Drivers Licensing, or GDL laws, which mandate new teenage drivers complete various driving phrases before officially getting their drivers’ license.

Further, recently initiated the “Be Safer and Drive Smarter” program to help parents set limits and expectations with their teenage drivers. Curfews, limitations on passengers, and a prohibition on cellphone use while in the vehicle are just a few examples is encouraging parents to implement.

Hopefully, these and other continued efforts by communities all across the country will help to reduce teen auto accident injuries and fatalities.

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