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Are teens more at risk for distracted driving?

The roads of California are not always a safe place to be, and many drivers engage in behaviors that could be considered dangerous. Some of these behaviors fall under the umbrella of distracted driving, which can be particularly harmful for numerous reasons. Additionally, these behaviors can be found in high frequency among teen drivers.

Teen Driver Source examines some of the most important facts related to distracted driving, specifically regarding how teens and distracted driving interact. Teens are more susceptible to getting into harmful or even fatal crashes due to reasons related to driving while distracted. There are several speculated reasons for this. One is that teens are less likely to be able to react to sudden dangers than older, more experienced drivers. This makes any potential crash a bigger risk, and also lowers a teen’s chances of managing the situation safely.

Another speculation is that teens simply engage more in distracted driving behaviors than their older counterparts. This primarily extends to the use of handheld electronics while on the road. However, it can also involve things like talking to passengers or even changing music stations while driving. Part of this may be because peer groups are not as discouraging of distracted driving behavior as they could be. If the behavior is seen as relatively acceptable, teens are less likely to disengage.

This is part of why many new campaigns against distracted driving are aimed at younger drivers. These drivers are seen as being more at risk, and are therefore the demographic whose mind safety officials want to change the most.