OKLAHOMA CITY – Summer is kicking off across the country, and many families are hitting the roads for summer vacations.
AAA is warning drivers about the ‘100 Deadliest Days,’ which is the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day.
Officials say the average number of deaths from crashes involving teenage drivers was 17 percent higher per day compared to any other days of the year.
Over the past five years, nearly 3,500 people have been killed in crashes involving teen drivers during the ‘100 Deadliest Days.’
“While teens may make mistakes when first learning to drive, it is important to continue educating them about safety behind the wheel so they avoid the reckless behaviors that put themselves and others at risk on the road,” said Leslie Gamble, AAA Oklahoma spokesperson.
AAA Foundation research found that nearly two-thirds of people injured or killed in a crash involving a teen driver are people other than the teen behind the wheel. Crashes for teen drivers increase significantly during the summer because teens are out of school and driving more often.
New crash data from 2013-2017 reveals major factors contributing to fatal teen crashes during the summer driving period include:
- Speeding (28 percent)
- Drinking and driving (17 percent)
- Distraction (9 percent).
AAA encourages parents to talk with teens early and often about abstaining from dangerous behavior, and teach by example.
“Parents have plenty to be concerned about as their teens hit the road this summer,” said Gamble. “They are the best line of defense to prevent deadly mistakes behind the wheel. Storing your phone out of reach, minding the speed limit, and staying away from impairing substances like alcohol and marijuana should be non-negotiable.”