Eight “Danger Zones” for Teen Drivers


People generally believe that car accidents are more common among teen drivers as compared to adults, and there is some truth to this presumption. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that auto crashes are the number one cause of death for American teens, claiming the lives of a half dozen 16 to 19-year-old victims per day. Individuals in this age group are three times more likely to be involved in a deadly crash than those 20 years or older, and the risk is significant during the first year after the teenager gets his or her license.


Whether you are a teen driver, the parent of one – or anyone sharing the road with them – it is important to understand the risks of Alaska motor vehicle accidents among younger drivers. The CDC describes the eight “Danger Zones” for teenage drivers as:

  • Lack of Experience: The top reason accidents are more common among teen drivers is they simply do not have as much practice behind the wheel as adults.
  • Driving with Teen Passengers: Even simple conversation can turn deadly when a teen’s attention span turns away from operating the vehicle. They may get so involved in a discussion that they are not focusing on the road.
  • Not Buckling Up: Though they do not prevent accidents, seat belts are proven to reduce the severe consequences when a teenage driver is involved in a crash. According to the CDC figures, motorists of all ages are 50% less likely to be killed or suffer injuries when they buckle up.
  • Driving at Night: Visibility is the biggest threat when teenagers drive at night, which is a particular concern in Alaska with remote roads, roaming animals, steep grades, and curves.
  • Distracted Driving: Teens and cell phones go hand-in-hand, leading many to text, talk on the phone, take pictures, or post to social media. Distracted driving has visual, cognitive, and manual implications that affect the capabilities of any driver.
  • Driving While Fatigued: Drowsiness interferes with a motorist’s ability to react to objects, traffic, or other threats on the road. A fatigued driver is either unable to respond in time to avoid a crash – or is the reason it happens.
  • Reckless Driving: Younger drivers are at an age whether they are often trying to impress their peers by playing the daredevil. They may be more tempted to speed, drag race, tailgate other cars, or engage in other reckless acts.
  • Drunk or Drugged Driving: Alcohol and drugs affect a motorist physically and mentally, but teens are especially at risk because impairment can be compounded by their lack of experience.


Contact an Alaska Car Accident Lawyer Regarding Your Legal Options

As a teen driver or the parent of one, you are in a better position to avoid motor vehicle crashes when you understand and address these eight Danger Zones for teenage motorists. However, if you were injured in a crash, it is essential to get legal help right away. To learn about our legal services in the areas of car accidents and other personal injury cases, please contact Power & Power Law in Anchorage, Alaska. We can schedule a free consultation to review your circumstances.