Teenagers Driving Trucks Suffer More Auto Accident Injuries, Texas Study Finds
Most people believe that driving a bigger, sturdier car like a truck will make their drive along Texas roadways safer. Many truck drivers feel that if they get hit, they are more likely to be okay. A new study conducted by researchers at the University of Texas, and published in the traffic safety journal Accident Analysis and Prevention, somewhat disproves this belief.
The UT transportation engineering study uncovered several well-known findings worth recounting. Most notable is that drinking and driving is the deadliest combination for teenage drivers.
Some of the more surprising findings of the study were that driving a pickup puts teens, especially 16- and 17-year-olds, at far higher risk of injury than driving a car. Researchers believe that a pickup truck’s powerful engine leads to aggressive driving behavior by teenage drivers. The speed of trucks, combined with older truck models not having the same safety features as regular cars is a recipe for disaster on Texas roads.
Age remains a big factor in dangerous traffic accidents. 16- and 17-year old drivers are more likely to drive aggressively than drivers aged 18-20. Teens driving with one teen passenger are more likely to be in an accident than those with two or more teen passengers, perhaps because the young driver feels a duty to entertain a solo passenger.
So the message of this recent study rings loud and clear – teenagers and other new drivers are more likely to get hurt if they are young and if they are in a truck. Parents should encourage new drivers to drive slowly, drive without distraction, and practice driving until they feel comfortable in their primary vehicle.
Safety Tips for Teenage Drivers:
Limit the hours new drivers drive to safer, daylight hours
Drive with few or no young passengers in the car; risks increase with more teenagers in the car
Use seat belts
Drive safer vehicles if possible
Parents can and should take courses on teen drinking
If you or someone you know needs assistance with a Texas motor vehicle accident claim, please contact experienced Texas personal injury lawyers before giving a statement to an adjuster or accepting any form of payment for your damages.