‘Tis the season. No, not the joyous holiday season, but the season for a prom car accident and the risk of a high school graduation car accident. Sadly, with proms and high school graduations come serious and sometime fatal car accidents. In fact, April, May and June are the three most dangerous months for high school drivers and passengers.
Sadly, this hit home in St. Petersburg after a crash in St. Petersburg claimed the life of a local teenager set to graduate from Lakewood High School. According to ABC Action News, two other teenagers were injured in this crash.
According to an Insurance Institute for Highway Safety report, the fatal crash rate per mile driven for 16-19 year-olds is nearly 3 times the rate for drivers ages 20 and over. The high school driver is not the only one at risk. The passengers – most times high school friends – are also at risk. The report indicates that in 2016, 55 percent of the deaths of teenage passengers in passenger vehicles occurred in vehicles driven by another teenager.
Prom and graduation are two great memories for most high schoolers. However, a prom car accident or a high school graduation car accident can forever tarnish the memories. However, there are ways to combat the risk of a prom car accident or graduation car accident. Here are a few of them:
• Wear your seatbelt – Not only is seatbelt use Florida law, it can save your life by keeping you from being ejected from the vehicle in a crash. Teenagers should use peer pressure to make sure all occupants are wearing their seatbelt. Yes, the a seatbelt may impede on the prettiness of a prom dress, but a prom car accident can be made much worse if high school friends are ejected because someone was not wearing a seatbelt.
• Don’t drive buzzed or drunk – We all know it, but it still needs to be said. Alcohol compromises your judgment and motor skills; two things that are needed to safety operate a motor vehicle. Teenagers may believe that prom and graduation are reasons to celebrate with alcohol. If they do, do not get into a car after the driver has consumed any alcohol. The driver may not be drunk, but can still be impaired enough to cause a graduation car accident.
• Keep in mind that it can happen to you – Teenage drivers may feel like they will never be in an accident because they are “good drivers” or “very careful” in what they do. However, tragedy can strike anyone, even those who believe they are being careful. Remember, you can be the safest driver and still get hit by another car who’s driver isn’t safe.
• Eliminate Distractions – Put a bunch of high school friends in a closed space with music and singing and dancing is likely to occur. If you are a passenger in a car, watch the music volume. It can be distracting to the driver. If you are the driver, save the singing and dancing for after you arrive safely at your destination.
Take steps to avoid a prom car accident or a graduation car accident. Make special memories of these special events and not tragic memories because of a crash.
Drive safely and watch out for those who don’t.
Personal Injury Attorney Matthew Noyes represents those injured in car accidents, motorcycle crashes, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents and other types of personal injury matters. He is a named partner at the Tampa Bay law firm of Perenich Caulfield Avril Noyes – one of the oldest personal injury law firms in Pinellas County. Call Attorney Matthew Noyes now at 727-796-8282 or complete the form on this page or simply click here to schedule a free case consultation.