Memorial Day weekend starts the beginning for what’s known as the 100 deadliest days for teen drivers.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2012, from Memorial Day through Labor Day, nearly 1,000 people were killed in car crashes involving teens. Eighty-eight percent of those killed were teen drivers.
Distracted driving is the leading cause for teen involved car accidents. According to distracion.gov 10% of all drivers under the age of 20 involved in fatal crashes were reported as distracted at the time of the crash.
Sarah Matson is a senior at Assumption High School who crashed her parents’ car while texting and driving.
“We were going to my friends house and I was texting at a green light, but I thought it went green, so while I was texting I ran into the back of a car in front of me,” Matson said.
Matson is one of thousands of teens who text and drive daily.
“I still text probably about the same. Snapchat, that will get you. That’s what I do,” said Matson.
Studies also show that texting isn’t the only problem when it comes to teens and distracted driving. A study done by the National Safety Council shows that the chances of teens getting into car accidents increases by 44 percent when they have passengers in the car with them.
Forty-three states restrict new teen drivers from having more than one passenger in the car for the first six months to a year after they get their license. States like Illinois also have laws regarding driving while on your phone.
To help parents protect their teens from driving distracted, many phone companies have come out with apps that prevent them from texting and driving.
For example, AT&T’s new parental features have an app called DriveMode that automatically turns on when the car reaches 25 mph. When the phone recieves a text message, an auto reply lets the friend know the person is driving.
The app also alert parents if their teen tries to disable the feature off their phone.
For more tips on how you can prevent your teen from driving distracted, go to driveithome.org.