As we age, we sometimes gain perspective and perhaps even wisdom. We often gain an appreciation for the value of life that we sometimes took for granted in the carefree days of youth.
A study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates that a significant percentage of our nation’s young people regularly engage in risky behavior while they’re behind the wheel or with friends who are driving; risky behavior that far too often results in car accidents and serious injuries.
Research for the “Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance” report was conducted in 2013 and the data was released in mid-2014, detailing troubling behavior that puts not only young people in danger, but those motorists who share the roads with them as well.
In the month before the survey, more than one-fifth of students across the country said they had at least once ridden in a “vehicle driven by someone who had been drinking alcohol.” Eighteen percent of ninth-grade boys said they had ridden with a drinking driver and by the senior year of high school, the percentage had risen to 25.3.
Of those students who said they had driven a car in the 30 days before the survey, 10 percent admitted that they had been drinking alcohol at least one time while behind the wheel.
Another dangerous behavior young people engage in while they’re driving: texting or emailing. According to the CDC report, 41.4 percent of students who had driven during the month prior to the survey said they had texted or emailed while driving.
As with drinking and driving, the behavior tends to worsen as the students get older. While 16.9 percent of ninth-graders admitted to texting while driving, a whopping 60.3 percent of high school seniors said they engaged in the dangerous practice.
Statistics are pretty abstract until you or a loved one is injured in a car accident caused by a distracted or drunken driver. Accident victims can speak with an experienced Ohio personal injury attorney about their legal options.