Summer is in high gear and in Ohio, that means potential dangers on the road, especially for teen drivers. During summer months, the risk of fatal accidents involving teen drivers and passengers increases by almost 20 percent. For motorists in general, one-third of fatal accidents in any given year will happen during the summer months.
The days between Memorial Day and Labor Day are often referred to as “the 100 deadliest days” because of the higher rate of fatal crashes. While teens are involved in a disproportionately large number, for all drivers the summer months mean vacations, weekend excursions and motorcyclists, all of which mean more traffic, distractions and potentially inexperienced drivers behind the wheel. All drivers will benefit from being aware and taking some precautions.
It sounds like common sense, but a reminder to yourself and your teen drivers about slowing down is a good idea. Summer excursions can take you along unfamiliar roads. Slowing down means more time to negotiate an unexpected turn or to react to directions from your navigator.
It’s not surprising that drinking goes with summer activities. A designated driver is a must no matter your age or driving experience.
The number of motorcycles on the road during an Ohio summer increases exponentially. For those in cars, simply watching for them can reduce the chance of being involved in an accident. For motorcyclists, careful driving and an awareness that they may not be as visible as a car are crucial to their safety.
The single biggest distraction for drivers of all ages is the cell phone. Put it on “do not disturb” and pull over if you need to take or make a call. If you are using your phone for navigation, use a dock that places the phone at dashboard level so you don’t have to look down to see it.
Whether it’s summer activities, rush hour traffic or traveling for the holidays, when roads are busy, accidents will happen. Practice defensive driving and educate your young drivers to watch for others changing lanes or pulling out from side streets and parking lots. Assume that you haven’t been seen, rather than that you have, and realize that the other driver may be distracted.
Keeping your family safe on the roads is a priority for everyone, but if an accident does happen, contact Elizabeth Bernard Law to be sure your rights are protected.
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