Deadliest Driving Days
When asked "statistically, what months have the highest crash and fatality rate?" most answer with a winter month such as December, January or February. The reasoning is because Colorado roads are icy, snow packed and inclement weather all increase risk, so naturally it would make sense that those are the months we experience the most fatal crashes. Most people think this way and are very surprised to find out differently.
So if it's not the winter months, then what months do we see the highest risk?
The 100 days from Memorial Day to Labor Day are the deadliest for teens. June, July and Aug are the months we see the most fatal crashes for all demographics, but even more so for teens. Just look at some of the facts:
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for teens
Teens have the highest crash rate of any age group
An average 260 teens are killed in car crashes each month during the summer, an increase of 26% compared with other months of the year
60% of teen crashes are caused by distracted driving
The top distractions for teens are other passengers (15%) and cell phones (12%)
Driving or riding as a passenger with someone who is under the influence of alcohol or drugs is steadily increasing and causing more fatal crashes
At Freedom Drivers Ed, we do not share these statistics to propagate fear in parents or teens. We share this information because knowledge is power and we need YOU as a parent and teen to stand with us to lower these statistics.
We need parents to:
Talk to their teen about the risks of driving distracted and under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Set defined expectations of number of passengers (even after they have held their license for 1 year) and not using their cell phones when driving.
Define consequences if the above expectations are not met - and follow through with the consequence.
Identify poor driving attitudes (speeding, not following traffic laws, being aggressive / aggravated with other drivers) and speak to them about how thinking and behaving this way increases their risk.
Model exceptional driving behavior for your teen.
Partner with a driving school thats sole focus and mission is to equip students with a skill set that can save their life.
Be consistent with helping your teen form the skills we teach into habit. The foundation is set during the permit phase, but reinforced during the 2-3 years after they are licensed.
Become an educator for other parents - explain the importance of habit development of risk lowering skills and the importance of partnering with a qualified school. Your teen needs to be trained well... but so do all other teens.
Let your teen know that they can count on you! As their parent, you are the person they need to know they can call when in trouble, without being punished.
We need teens to:
Be mature, seek understanding and practice the skills we instruct into habit.
Set strong expectations for themselves and their peers that reflect their values. Universally, we all value our life, our futures, our finances and others lives - so behave to always protect these values.
Stand up for yourself and your friends - say something! It could save your life or your friends.
Summer can be a very fun and exciting time! However, we have to also recognize the statistics and realize that summer poses an increase risk for our precious loved ones.
At Freedom Drivers Ed, we truly value the lives we have the privilege to impact and hope that you also see the need for being apart of a movement to lower crash statistics.
Want to know more about us and our mission, click here?