The Staggering Cost of Teen Driving

According to an analysis conducted for AAA, in 2006 drivers ages 15 to 17 were involved in approximately 974,000 crashes that injured 406,427 people and killed 2,541. Here are more sobering statistics:
*]According for The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among U.S. teens, accounting for 36 percent of all deaths in the age group.
*]The risk of motor vehicle crashes is higher among 16- to 19-year-olds than among any other age group, and per-miles-driven teens ages 16 to 19 are four times more likely than older drivers to crash, says the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
*]Risk is highest at age 16, and the crash rate per miles driven is twice as high for 16 year olds as it is for 18 and 19 year olds, according to the IIHS.
*]IIHS statistics show that 16- and 17-year-old driver death rates increase with each additional passenger.
*]According to, 1 in 3 teenage drivers has an accident in the first year of receiving a license, and a teenager is injured in a car crash every 55 seconds and killed every 6.5 minutes.[/LIST]

So raise their insurance rates. But don’t take away every teens right to drive no matter how staggering the cost may be. One might find the same statistics among the elderly but we let people drive until they are in an accident and can’t drive anymore.

How much of the rate is due to their being teens and how much to their being inexperienced. I have known a couple of people who started driving in their 20’s or later; they were terrible drivers. Around here we have a lot of recent immigrants who learned to drive after arriving in the U.S. It makes life interesting.

One expects a higher accident rate for new drivers. As in anything else there is a learning curve, and teens may learn faster.

In the event that you have never added a new driver to your current auto insurance policy, let me inform you that the underwriters take these statistics into account when setting your rates. They also take into account the type of automobile the new driver will be driving. There is also a set of statistics independent of automobile licensing and accident data that indicates that there is a maturity threshold at age 25. This means that at sometime around that age most people begin to realize a significantly deeper understanding of consequences as related to personal behavior. So much for maturity at age 7 as the Catholic curialists have codified.


Teens Driving? Gas alone cost too much to let them drive these days.:stuck_out_tongue:

then obviously the statistics on older drivers should be posted, otherwise they are not relevant to this discussion. Just because teen drivers are quite likely to have accidents, does not say anything about drivers in other age groups, unless their rate is compare with rates for all groups.

It’s nice to see them recommending accident avoidance skills, and driving schools that focus on the what if’s.

I still remember driver’s ed for me involving taking the car out for a spin, making sure you don’t speed, doing some parallel parking, and making sure you are looking both ways when you cross an intersection. There was no training in lane avoidance, when to brake and not to brake, or even hard braking just to see how the car can steer. You need to know that before you get into a situation.

I know many schools are cutting driver’s ed to save money, but I would argue that is one area where we should be spending money.

Gilliam, what are you suggesting should be done, or are you just posting this as an FYI?

The costs of teen pregnancies are even worse.

You should check out the article about the cost of non-married lifestyles on society!!!

Those are the worst

Hmmmm…For what area? Nationwide? Worldwide?

That means that every day 221 teens are killed. That means that every year, 80,861 teens are killed.

Additionally, 1440 teens are injured every day; extrapolated out equals 525600 teens are injured every year.

Is this believable? I question these numbers.

I have yet to figure out the purpose of this thread. There is no reason to deny teens the privilege of driving despite these statistics.


At one point in this thread you called teen driving a “right” now you call it a privelege…which is it in your mind? In my mind the answer is clear…teen driving is a PRIVELEGE. I think the US has it wrong and Germany has it right…in Germany you get your license at 18 years of age…and pay more than $1000 for that privelege by way of a GOOD drivers school. I also think Germany has the drinking age thing correct…you can buy beer anywhere at 16…younger than that if you’re with your parents…hard liquor is 18. That way, the drinking thing is old hat and not as big a lure for the kids when they start driving. The DUI level is .05 in Germany as oppossed to .08 or .10 in the States.

As a side note, my wife doesn’t think women should drive at all…any time we go around a slow or irradic driver and it’s a female she says “women with cars are always bad.” Currently she says she doesn’t want to learn to drive…I’m certain that will change when we move to the US and she sees that in most communities you NEED to drive.

These stats remind me of a story I heard about a commission investigating railway fatalities. They supposedly discovered that most deaths occurred in the last car – and recommended that the last car be removed from all passenger trains.

Teens will always be the most inexperienced drivers. You might make a tiny difference by raising the age to 18 (legal adulthood), but not much.

To really do anything you’d have to raise the age to 21, at least and who would support that?

It’s a privilege for anyone. But to take that privilege away from teens is just plain wrong. I think we’re doing fine. Two years can not make much of a difference. It’s howmuch the parent brings up the child. I started driving at 17 and never caused one accident. But based on the consensus here I should have had to wait until 18. Why? I was just as responsible at 17 as I was at 18 and as I still am today. Irresponsibility can happen at any age. The high insurance rates for these drivers is enough discipline. We do not need to tell them they can’t drive at all.

I wouldn’t. Let’s keep it at 16 and have the individual parent decide if they want their child to wait longer.

I have to agree with this.

My 16 year old got his permit at 15.5. We have not allowed him to test for his license yet, not because he is not a good driver, but because we want him to have a full year’s experience of supervised driving. He will be testing in a few weeks. He will be nearly 17.

He is in many ways a better driver than my husband! He makes excellent decisions, is careful, is observant. Our biggest challenge will be making sure he does not play music while driving! (our personal rules - no music, no iPod, no cell phone, and no friends in the car for the first year).

He was driving with me last weekend, and almost got hit by a middle-aged woman who did not stop for a stop sign. :eek: She hit the breaks a little too late, my son breaked hard, carefully drove around her, and then stopped a few blocks up at a red light. This same woman who nearly hit us then ran the same red light in the left lane and kept going! I think HER license should be questioned. My teen certainly exhibited far better driving habits than she did.

Thank you. You have proved my case.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit