With the passing of Memorial Day, we are currently in the “100 deadliest days” for teenage drivers—the number of days between Memorial Day and Labor Day. When teenagers are out of school for summer break, more teen drivers and passengers die than during the school year, according to AAA.
Teen driving safety in Florida is a priority to reduce the number of teenage deaths and injuries that occur on our state’s roads. However, there are a number of influences on teen drivers that make them more likely to participate in dangerous driving behaviors. One example of this is distraction in the form of texting.
Texting while walking and texting while driving are bad habits teenagers have. Sadly, most teens don’t even realize they are walking or driving into things while they are texting. In fact, it is typical for a teenager to send five times more texts per day than an adult. Sometimes teens don’t even know how many texts they have sent—putting themselves in danger because texting has become such a huge part of their life.
Texting continues to rank as the top form of communication amongst teens. However, teenagers need to realize the dangers texting can cause them. Statistics indicate that a teen is 23 times more likely to be in a Florida auto accident or near-accident nationwide when participating in texting while driving.
The Florida Legislature has approved SB 52 and Governor Rick Scott has signed it into law. Texting while driving will now be illegal in Florida in an effort to make the roads safer for teenagers and all drivers. However, teenagers as well as adults may still try to get away with texting behind the wheel.
According to a recent AT&T survey, 97 percent of teenage drivers know that texting while driving is dangerous, but 43 percent of them still admit to texting while driving. Additionally, the survey revealed that 75 percent of teenagers surveyed say texting while driving is a common practice among their friends.
As Sarasota accident attorneys, we hope this new law and the knowledge of texting’s danger will be enough for teen drivers to put down their phones when they are driving. We encourage passengers to speak up and tell drivers who are texting that you will text for them. Make your concerns known that you don’t feel comfortable with a driver texting.
If you were injured by a distracted driver in a pedestrian or auto accident, call a skilled Sarasota personal injury law firm, the Mallard Law Firm, at 888-409-3805 for a private, complimentary consultation today.