Last month an 18-year-old New Port Richey teen broke his neck in a car accident. He says wet roads played a contributing role in the crash that ejected him through an open window.
While unfortunate, this collision is just one of thousands each year involving teen drivers. It seems that summertime is the worst time of year for teens involved in car crashes. In fact, AAA says that the top 10 deadliest days for teen auto accidents occur when kids are out of school.
Sadly, this was the case for two teen girls killed last week in New Port Richey. The girls weren’t texting or fiddling with their iPod when they crashed. It was raining on Moon Lake Road when the 17-year-old driver and her 16-year-old best friend were killed.
The Florida Highway Patrol says that it is crucial for teen drivers to know how to navigate when the roads are slick. However, that is easier said than done, and most teen drivers lack the experience.
AAA cites another frightening fact – the risk of fatal crashes involving teen drivers double at night.
• Slow Down: Even when operating at a low speed of just 30 miles per hour, it takes almost 50 percent more distance to stop a vehicle. The stopping distance increases drastically the faster a driver is travelling.
• Stay in the Middle Lane: Why? Most roads are crested in the middle, which allows water to flow to the outside lanes.
• Turn your Headlights On: Rain can actually obscure your vision, so turning your headlights on when it rains can do two things to help you while driving: 1.) You will be able to see the road better and 2.) Other drivers sharing the road will be able to see you better.
• Do Not Follow Other Cars Too Closely: As mentioned before, it takes a driver longer to stop when the roads are slick, so if you follow too closely, you may not be able to stop in time should the driver ahead of you brake quickly.
Furthermore, you should keep a close eye on the tread-life of your tires. If your tires are improperly inflated or too worn, the chances that you could lose control of your vehicle are amplified. This is particularly true when roads are slick from rain, increasing your odds of hydroplaning.
Car wrecks on wet roads can be devastating. Injuries can range in severity from broken bones to traumatic brain injuries to spinal cord trauma and even death.
If you have a teen driver in your household or family, please take the time to make sure they fully understand the dangers of driving. Remind them to operate their vehicles safely by not speeding and paying attention to all traffic signs and signals.
If you, or your teenage driver, has been injured in a car accident in New Port Richey, Dade City or any surrounding area, please contact a Pasco County Auto Accident Attorney at Whittel & Melton online or call 727-847-2299. We can provide you with a free consultation in order to determine if you and your family are eligible to recover financial compensation for your losses.