Avoiding Teen Driving Dangers on Thanksgiving

Avoid teen driving dangers this Thanksgiving

Accidents among teen drivers surged in 2015. As for 2016, the holiday season is right around the corner. That means college students will get behind the wheel for the first time in months. The trips, parties, and temptations of alcohol can pose serious dangers for these drivers.

You may be surprised to know that the most dangerous day for drivers is the night before Thanksgiving Day, otherwise known as Black Wednesday. Mostly attributed to college students and out-of-town visitors beginning their homecoming with a night at the bar, the potential for DUIs and alcohol-related accidents greatly increases. In 2014, fatalities from alcohol accounted for 35 percent of Thanksgiving highway deaths.

On average, four or more drinks for women, and five or more drinks for men on one occasion is considered binge drinking. When you exceed these, you’re at risk of:

  • Unintentional injuries (accidents, falls, drownings)
  • Intentional injuries (sexual assault, violence, homicide)
  • Legal repercussions (DUI, jail, fines)
  • Alcohol poisoning
  • Chronic health problems or diseases

Needless to say, dangers extend far beyond driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Speeding, distracted driving, and inexperience are all risks with young drivers. Whether intentional or unintentional acts put teens at risk of a crash, their lives and the lives around them may be completely altered.

Simple safety measures are often overlooked, but they have the power to prevent potentially tragic accidents.

Here are some driving tips for young adults:

  • Don’t drive or get in a car with a driver under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Don’t exceed the speed limit
  • Always wear a seatbelt
  • Limit the number of passengers in your car
  • Put your phone away

Helpful tips for parents of drivers:

  • Talk to your teens about their plans
  • Discuss the dangers of driving under the influence
  • Make sure the weather is safe for driving
  • Be sure their car is reliable, as well as suitable for a teen
  • Work with your teenager to establish a time frame of their night and when they will arrive home

We hope that utilizing smart driving tactics will greatly minimize the Thanksgiving crashes and fatalities and make it a safer year on the road for teen drivers.