It's officially summertime and this week Monmouth County residents of all ages are getting ready to celebrate the July 4th holiday. The summer months are often a time when New Jersey residents of all ages vacation and travel to spend time with friends and family. Unfortunately, the summer months are also one of the most deadly seasons for drivers and this is particularly true of young and inexperienced teen drivers.
A recent study conducted by WalletHub aimed to identify which states are the safest and most dangerous for teen drivers. For the study, researchers looked at a number of factors including state driving laws, a state's overall economic climate and general safety conditions. Overall, New Jersey ranked number 12 out of the 50 states for teen driving safety.
By nature, teen drivers tend to be involved in more and more serious car accidents. Lack of driving experience, immaturity and a propensity to take risks are often noted as factors contributing to why so many fatal car accidents involve teen drivers. In an effort to educate teens about the importance of safe driving and reduce the likelihood that a teen may cause or be involved in a car accident, every state has enacted Graduated Driver Licensing laws.
In New Jersey, teen drivers who take steps to obtain a drivers license must pass through three stages. Each stage has certain requirements and restrictions including bans on nighttime driving and restrictions on the number and ages of passengers a teen driver is allowed to transport. Additionally, New Jersey is the only state that requires teen drivers to identify themselves by displaying a state-issued car window sticker.
Every summer in the United States, an average of 260 teens suffer fatal injuries in car accidents. As we approach the July 4th holiday weekend, teen drivers in New Jersey are reminded to drive safety and follow all traffic laws. Failure to do so may result in a teen driver either causing or being involved in a serious car accident that could potentially change their life and the lives of those impacted.
Source: The Jersey Tomato Press, "See how New Jersey ranks for teen drivers and safety, education," June 22, 2014National Highway Transportation Association, "Teen Drivers - Graduated Driver Licensing," 2014Saferoads4teens.org, "New Jersey," 2014