Did you know that motor vehicle crashes are the second leading cause of death for U.S. teenagers? According to the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) 2019 report, more than 2,500 teens, between the ages of 16-19, die in motor vehicle accidents each year. Add to that, another 285,000 teens were treated in emergency departments for injuries suffered in motor vehicle crashes.
So, what’s the leading cause for this? It’s distracted driving. A 2019 national Youth Risk Behavior Survey revealed that among U.S. high school students who drove, 39% texted or e-mailed while driving at least once during the 30 days before the survey.
Teen motor vehicle crashes are preventable. Below, are some additional CDC facts to help better understand the distractions that face teenage drivers.
- Eleven teens die every day as a result of texting while driving.
- One out of every four car accidents in the U.S. is caused by texting and driving.
- Ninety-four percent of teens acknowledge that texting while driving is dangerous.
- One-fourth of teenagers respond to at least one text message every time they drive and 20% of teens report having multi-text message conversations while driving.
- Teen drivers receive the most calls from their parents.
- Cell phone use while driving is highest among 16-24-year-old drivers, and female drivers using a cell phone are more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than male drivers.
- Drivers who use hand-held devices are four-times as likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves.
- In 2018, the motor vehicle death rate for male drivers ages 16–19 was almost two-times higher than the death rate for female drivers of the same age.
- Teen deaths are highest between the hours of 6-9 p.m.
- The presence of teen passengers increases the crash risk of unsupervised teen drivers. A teen driver with only one additional passenger doubles the risk of getting into a fatal car accident. With two or more passengers, they are five-times as likely.
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