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Teen drivers more dangerous when passengers are teens

Research prepared by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety highlights the importance of adult supervision while teens develop their driving skills. Parents in New Jersey should aim to accompany their teen drivers for at least 100 hours behind the wheel before allowing them to drive with only teen friends. The foundation measured substantial increases in traffic fatalities when teens drove without anyone age 35 or older in their vehicles.

When teens drive with only members of their peer group, their accidents result in 51 percent more deaths compared to older drivers. An analysis of teen accidents showed that deaths among occupants of vehicles hit by teen drivers went up by 56 percent. Teen drivers themselves experienced a 45 percent higher death rate, and fatalities among bicyclists and pedestrians rose by 17 percent.

The presence of adults in vehicles driven by teens drastically lowered the chances of fatalities. Deaths among accident victims fell by 8 percent when adults supervised teen drivers. By investing time to monitor and guide teens as they practice driving, parents and other adults may help prevent deadly accidents. In 2016, over 1 million accidents involved teen drivers and killed over 3,200 people.

A person who survived a crash caused by a driver who made a mistake or acted recklessly might pursue damages with a personal injury claim. To gain clarification about insurance coverage, a person may consult an attorney after a car accident. Legal advice might inform the person about the likelihood of qualifying for a financial settlement. An attorney may handle communications with an insurance adjuster and present evidence about the cause of the crash and the expenses arising from the person's injuries. If a case appears to need litigation, an attorney may be able to file a lawsuit and explain the evidence to a jury.

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