Teen Motorists versus Senior Drivers

Given a chance between sharing the road with an elderly driver or a teen motorist, which one would you, or should you, choose?

Given a chance between sharing the road with an elderly driver or a teen motorist, which one would you, or should you, choose?

Conventional thinking holds that both groups of drivers are a danger to other motorists on the road. There are factors affecting motorists on both ends of the spectrum, which can impact their driving abilities. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the safest motorists are between the age of 64 and 69. The most dangerous motorists on the road are those aged between 15 and 20 years old.

In 2008, more than 5,800 motorists between 15 and 20 years old were involved in fatal auto accidents. That number was down by more than 19% over the past 10 years, but the fact is that motor vehicle crashes remain the number one cause of death for people in this age group. The same year, more than 2,700 teen motorists between 15 and 20 were killed in accidents.

Senior motorists may seem like they have the same high crash rate that teen motorists do, when it comes to crash rate per mile driven. However, the fact is that senior motorists don't drive as much as other motorists, and therefore, this may not be the ideal factor on which to compare their driving abilities with others. When you compare accident data on a per capita basis, senior motorists have much lower crash rates. In fact, the fatality-per-capita rates for senior motorists have decreased by about 40% since 1975, and are now at some of the lowest levels recorded.

Here's an easy way to examine teen crash data. In the year 2008, teen motorists comprised about 8.5% of the American population, but accounted for more than 12% of all fatalities in accidents. Elderly citizens between the ages of 64 and 69 accounted for just 3% of the total population the same year, but accounted for over 3% of all fatalities. Even when you consider crashes per mile driven, teen motorists are more than four times as likely as senior citizens to be involved in an accident.

Roger D. "Skip" Slates II is a computer and internet law lawyer. He specializes in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM) for attorneys, law firms and other professionals.

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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

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