In New York the fatal accident rate for teenage drivers is relatively low – only about 9.7 out of every 100,000 are involved in a fatal car accident. Additionally, while teenage drivers still make up the largest percentage of traffic accidents, the total number of crashes may be decreasing.
For 16 and 17-year-old drivers, at least, there is no question. The number of fatalities is definitely decreasing. According to a study released yesterday, there was a 36 percent drop in fatal crashes for this age group between 2004 and 2008.
A big part of this drop seems to be increased focus on teen driving laws. According to Jim Axelrod, these new laws and stipulations include things such as graduated driver licensing, which keeps new drivers out of situations that have proven to be dangerous for teen drivers.
Such situations include driving at night and driving with other teens in the car.
Of course, these laws aren’t national and vary by state. Whereas New York’s strict driving laws have kept many safe, other states have refrained from implementing tough laws. Needless to say, the broad picture is an intricate one.
Then too, even in New York, where the percentage of teens involved in fatal accidents is relatively low, legislators and public safety advocates still grapple with a crash rate that is far too high.
While it’s great news that these laws are helping, most would agree that we’ve still got a long way to go.