Teenage drivers do not have the maturity or driving experience that older motorists have, and this makes sharing the road with them risky. Research shows that teenage drivers are more prone to distraction than older motorists. When these drivers have teenage passengers riding alongside them in their cars and get into crashes, the presence of the teen passenger means a higher risk of death for everyone involved.
According to AAA Newsroom, if you get into a wreck with a teenage driver, your chance of dying in that wreck increases by 51% if that driver had a teenage passenger present. The same holds true for anyone else involved in the crash, including those traveling in the teen’s vehicle and any other motorists or passengers affected.
Fatality rates involving teen drivers, teen passengers
Studies show that the risks associated with teenage drivers having teenage passengers are even more severe for those traveling in other vehicles. If you find yourself involved in a crash with a teen driver who has a teen passenger and are traveling in another vehicle, your odds of suffering a fatality increase by 56%. If you are in the wreck as a cyclist or pedestrian, your chance of dying increases by 17%.
Fatality rates involving teens with older passengers
Interestingly, when teen drivers crash and have passengers in their cars that are at least 35, the chances of everyone involved dying decrease by 8%. This indicates that it is not having a passenger, in general, that raises fatality risks, but rather, having a young, teenage passenger that does so.
Parents of teen drivers should do their part to enhance public safety by making sure their kids practice driving under a wide range of circumstances. They may also want to ban their teens from driving with other teens until they have more road experience.