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West Virginia, Kentucky Among States with Most Teen Traffic Fatalities

A report from LendingTree’s revealed Kentucky and West Virginia as two of the top five states with the highest ratio of teen driver deaths to young licensed drivers.

Based on accident data from 2013 to 2017, the report presents information on the number of licensed drivers in each state who are 19 years old or younger, and the number of teen driver deaths during those years. Additionally, the report shows the average amount of young driver fatalities each year per 10,000 licensed driver ages 16 to 19.

Kentucky and West Virginia: Two of the Most Dangerous Places for Young Drivers

Kentucky tops the list at an average rate of 3.47 deaths per 10,000 young drivers. From 2013-2017, there were 73,867 licensed drivers in the state in the studied age ranges, and a total of 128 fatalities. The state with the second-highest number of fatalities is Mississippi, then North Carolina, Montana, and West Virginia in the fifth spot on the list. West Virginia’s average annual fatalities equate to about 2.2 deaths per 10,000 19-and-under drivers. Sixty teen drivers were killed on West Virginia’s roads from 2013 to 2017. The state had 54,442 drivers aged 19 and younger.

Twenty-two states fall above the national average for teen driver deaths, which totals 1.44 fatalities per every 10,000 licensed drivers who are in the age range of 16 to 19 years old.

Frequent Causes of Car Accidents Involving Teenagers

Young drivers are highly at risk for being injured in a collision. Inexperience is often to blame: Teenagers simply do not know best driving practices, because they have not been driving very long.

In addition to general inexperience, teen drivers are more likely to engage in dangerous behaviors such as:

  • Texting and driving, talking on the phone, eating, drinking, applying makeup, speaking to passengers, or other examples of distracted driving
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs
  • Driving recklessly
  • Driving without a seatbelt

A teen driver’s risk of an accident may be amplified if other young people are present in the vehicle. Teen drivers are more likely to act recklessly if encouraged by their friends.

Regardless of your age, you should always drive as safe as you possibly can — it will protect you and everyone else on the road.

When accidents happen, call Troy Law Firm PLLC. We represent injury victims in the Charleston, WV area, as well as Eastern Kentucky.

To speak with our attorney during a free case evaluation, call (304) 315-2299 or use our form to schedule a consultation.