A recent study says that Missouri is one of the most dangerous states in the country for teen drivers. According to KQ2 News, the WalletHub study ranked Missouri 45 th in the nation for overall teen driving safety based on such factors as safety conditions and driving laws. The study is particularly troubling given that the state is currently witnessing a dramatic uptick in fatal motor vehicle accidents, which police say is likely due to an increase in distracted driving such as texting and driving.
The WalletHub study found that Missouri was the fifth most dangerous state in the nation for teen drivers. The state ranked the 10 th worst for overall safety conditions and second worst for driving laws that affect teen driving safety. Officials say that the biggest safety issue they have seen with teen drivers is texting and driving, which is particularly dangerous for new drivers given their relative inexperience. Furthermore, teen safety is an especially pressing concern during the summer months. Not only are more teens likely to be on the road now that the summer break has begun, but they are also likely to be faced with challenges they have never experienced before. The summer construction season, for example, forces young drivers to deal with road hazards that are far less common at other times of the year.
The concerns about teen driving safety in Missouri come at a time when the state is experiencing a worrying surge in overall traffic deaths. According to ABC 17 News, traffic fatalities so far this year have increased by 11 percent compared to the same time last year. As of April 20, 233 people had been killed in traffic accidents in the state, which is 24 more than were killed at the same point last year. The Missouri State Highway Patrol says the three biggest factors in fatal accidents are driver inattention, speeding, and impairment. Inattention can include various driver behaviors, such as using a mobile phone while driving. The Missouri Department of Transportation also notes that many crashes this year have involved teenagers and that in 2015 there were 76 teen fatalities on Missouri’s roads and highways.
Car accidents are a serious risk in Missouri, especially for young drivers. For anybody who has been hurt in an accident, it is important to reach out for help as soon as possible. A personal injury attorney can assist accident victims in a number of ways, including by guiding them through their legal options and helping them pursue claims that could potentially help deal with the financial fallout of a crash.