It’s one of the most exciting times in most people’s lives … learning how to drive and earning that driver’s license. Most teenagers have worked really hard at earning the privilege to get behind the wheel, and drive. Unfortunately, their inexperience behind the wheel often leads to a teen driver car accident.
But teenage car accidents are one of the leading causes of personal injury and death. Triple AAA Washington and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety car accident statistics show that teenage drivers are 9 times more likely to cause injury accidents than middle-aged drivers.
Teenage drivers present the greatest risk for injury or fatality car crashes.
If you or someone you love, has been injured by a teen driver or involved in a car accident with a teen driver, you need an expert car accident attorney. Premier Law Group is here to help. We specialize in personal injury accidents, provide the highest quality legal services, and we do this with compassion and respect. Our teen driver car accident lawyers in Seattle are here to help YOU get on the path to recovery.
Car Accident Statistics for Teenage Drivers
Triple AAA Washington and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety talk at length about teen car accident statistics, in Washington State, and across the country. In 2018:
- 285,000 Teens treated in Emergency Rooms for car accident injuries
- 2,500 Teens aged 13-19 were killed in teenage car crashes
- Fatal and Non-Fatal Car Accident Injuries in Teens aged 13-19 caused $11.8 billion in medical costs, work loss, and property damages
- 75% of teenage car accidents are caused by inexperience
Causes of Teenage Driver Automobile Crashes
The leading causes of teen crashes, injuries and deaths are:
- Driver inexperience. Because teenage drivers underestimate and make errors in judgment that cause serious injury accidents
- Reckless driving. Because reckless driving causes one-third of all fatal teenage car accidents
- Distracted driving. Because cell phone texting, sending emails, tuning in music tracks, friends in the car all negatively affect teenage driving performance
- Alcohol/substance use. Because 25% of drivers aged 15-20 had been drinking when they were killed in a car accident
- Nighttime and Weekend Driving. Because 37% of all car crash deaths of 13-19 year olds happened between the hours of 9p to 12 p, and 3p to 6pm
- Not using seat belts. Because 50% of teens aged 16-19 years old who died in car accidents were not wearing seat belts
Common Types of Injuries
Any part of the body can suffer serious injuries in teenage car accidents. Some injuries may not show symptoms for days, weeks, even months after a car accident. Here are some common injuries our clients have experienced in a car accident:
- Neck and Back Injuries. Whiplash, muscle sprains, broken vertebrae, spinal cord injury including bulging discs and more, all of which can cause long-term disability
- Severe Head Injuries. Concussion, traumatic brain damage when heads impact with seat backs, steering wheels, dashboards, and windshields
- Internal Injuries. Contusions, bruises, broken ribs, punctured lungs and other life-changing internal organ injuries
- Facial injuries, scars and disfigurement. –Caused by high impact with broken glass, dash, and any hard surface inside the car. May require surgical repair and can leave victim with facial scar
- Muscles, ligaments, and tendons. Can be torn, difficult to observe with medical imaging equipment, and take a long time to heal
- Burns. Occur when car catches on fire, or if body skin comes in contact with hot fluids, chemicals and other crash substances, sometimes requiring skin grafts
- Broken bones, fractures, wrist and hand injuries. Broken limbs and fractures are very common injuries in car accidents and may require extensive surgery and casts to repair
- Loss of Limb, amputation. Any limb can be severed during a car crash, requiring surgical amputation. This injury is often life-changing for victims and has permanent effects on their lives.
Legal Rights in Teen Driver Accidents
Anyone injured in a car accident with a teen driver has the right to receive compensation for injuries and damages. Many teen drivers’ parents’ insurance policy covers them. So, if the teen is driving on behalf of the parents and causes an accident, the parents will be responsible for medical costs and damages.
There are many complicated factors that come into play following a teen driver car accident. This is the time when you really need an expert car accident attorney, to discuss your particular case and explain your rights, issues and a plan for moving forward.
What If The Teen Driver Was Not “At Fault”?
If the teenage driver isn’t “at fault” for the car accident, the next step is to file a claim with your own insurance company. You do this to pay for damages and injuries – as long as you have the right insurance coverages.
Working with your own car insurance company can be as difficult as working with any other insurer – negotiating with claims adjustors, possibly re-negotiating for a fair settlement to medical costs, property damages and potential disability. This can be emotionally draining and may not lead to a “fair and equitable” settlement.
Good reasons for turning over claim and settlement negotiations to expert accident attorneys to advocate on your behalf, for your health and welfare.
Parent Responsibility for Teen Driver Accidents
Regardless of the age of the driver, all drivers have a duty to drive in a safe way. This is because it’s our responsibility to other drivers to not cause an accident.
In the case of a teen driver found at fault for causing an accident, the Revised Code of Washington, Section 4.24.190, holds that parents can be held financially liable for harm caused by their minor children.
These considerations come into play to determine parental liability:
- The parent owns and maintains the car
- The family business uses the car
- The driver of the car is member of the family responsible for the car’s maintenance
- Lastly the parent gives consent to drive the car
How a Seattle Teen Driver Car Accident Lawyer Can Help
People who have sustained injuries or damages, or both, in car accidents, have many needs. Costs for medical treatments, lost wages, and emotional pain and suffering that follows the trauma of a car accident.
Most importantly: an expert accident attorney is YOUR advocate! The attorney acts on YOUR behalf throughout the entire claims process. They also handle all negotiations, and prepare for a courtroom trial, if this becomes necessary.
Contact a Dedicated Teen Driver Car Accident Attorney in Seattle Today!
Premier Law Group has made the commitment to protect YOUR RIGHTS.