Teenager Car Accidents on the Rise in Missouri & Kansas
According to a recent study by AAA, teen drivers are more likely to get into an accident than adult drivers. The study further indicates that carrying teen passengers increases the risk of getting into an accident more than adult passengers.
If you have a teenage family member, you may be wondering how to prevent accidents with teenage drivers and what to do in case an accident occurs. If you or your teen child were injured in an accident in Missouri or Kansas that was not your fault, contact our personal injury attorneys. We have offices in Kansas City, MO and Overland Park, KS and are ready to help.
Read on for a summary of:
the highest risk times of the year for teen accidents in Missouri and Kansas,
what to do after a car crash with a teenager in Kansas City, and
safety steps you can take to avoid accidents with teenage drivers.
When Teenage Accidents Occur in Kansas & Missouri
Car accidents with teenage drivers in Missouri and Kansas are most often caused due to drunk driving, distracted driving, and speeding. Car accidents with teenagers also happen to be on the rise at certain times of the year, including:
During homecoming, a teenager may be given the freedom to drive to and from the dance alone or with friends. You should make sure your teenager is familiar with the route to their date’s house, the restaurant, and the school.
In addition, there’s a big difference between driving during the day on a dark fall night. So you can minimize the risk of a homecoming accident by riding with them around the same time they come from the dance to create familiarity with the road at night.
Prom and Graduation
Prom and graduation are among the most anticipated dates for high school students. Unfortunately, they also pose the highest risk times of the year for teen accidents. Underage drinking, distracted driving, and fatigue increase the risk of teens ending up in car accidents after prom and graduation.
As a parent or guardian, you should talk to your child about the dangers of driving under the influence and distracted driving. Propose public transportation or offer to hire chauffeur services during these occasions. If you’re planning to let your child drive on their own, make it a habit to ride with them and teach them driving rules such as:
- Always putting on the seatbelt
- Staying within the recommended speed limit
- Never driving when feeling tired or exhausted
- Never driving while under the influence of alcohol or any other substance
- Avoiding distractions when behind the wheels
Pool parties are another high-risk event for teenage drivers. In addition to car accidents, teens are at risk of slip-and-fall accidents, diving accidents, electrocution, and trip-and-fall accidents. These accidents can be fatal and lead to serious injuries, like brain injuries, broken bones, joint dislocation, soft tissue injuries, amputation, and back and neck injuries, among others.
The pool owner may be liable if your teen child is involved in a pool party accident. However, the pool owner is not automatically held liable as the law must look into the details leading to the accident before determining liability. For instance, if the kids were trespassing when injured, the law doesn’t hold the owner responsible as they do not have a duty of care to trespassers.
What to Do After an Accident with Teenagers in MO & KS
Your teenage child may be responsible, but parental instincts will likely kick in immediately after leaving home for prom, homecoming, or a house party at a friend’s. Make it your duty to teach them how to behave in case of an accident. After the accident, your child must remain calm, reasonable, and safe. Let them know that in case of an accident:
- You are concerned about their well-being and not mad
- If possible, they should move to a safe distance
- Call 9-1-1 so that local enforcement can respond quickly to the accident and take a report for the accident
- Accept medical attention from the EMT responders
- Contact you or another guardian as opposed to contacting their fellow teen friends
- Contact a personal injury attorney to instruct the teen on what to do after the accident
Here are some safety precautions you can take to minimize the risk of teen accidents in Missouri and Kansas:
Warn Your Child About the Dangers of Drunk Driving
You can’t be with your teenager all the time, and you certainly can’t control the behavior of other teenagers. However, you can educate your teen about why they should always have a designated driver. In addition, you can volunteer to pick them up after the party to prevent an instance where they are forced to drive with someone who was drinking.
Teach Your Teen about the Dangers of Texting While Driving
Separating teens from their phones can be difficult, if not impossible. However, your teen needs to understand the dangers of texting when behind the wheel. Before you give your teen permission to drive, consider enrolling them in a driving school and make them put away their phone while they are driving.
Monitor their Driving Speed and Teach Defensive Driving
Missouri and Kansas have strict laws and penalties for speeding. Your teenager needs to understand that a motor vehicle becomes very dangerous when operated on roads more than the posted limit. They need to know what to do if they are driving next to another teen driver who is speeding and how to drive in a defensive manner.
Our Accident Injury & Disability Attorney in Kansas Can Help
If your or your teen child was injured in an accident that was not your fault, don’t go it alone. Our Kansas City personal injury attorney can help investigate the accident, determine liability, and seek a full and fair recovery on your behalf.
Contact us today at 816-203-0143 for a free consultation.