Independence Day ranks as the single deadliest day of the year for American motorists. On average, 140 people die in motor vehicle accidents on July 4. Teenagers account for about 10% of those fatalities, and insurance data indicates that a higher than average percentage of these tragedies can be attributed to distracted driving.
Part of the rise in summer traffic fatalities is probably due to an increase in traffic. Travel volume is expected to be up 5% in Oregon, Washington and California during this July 4 holiday week; AAA estimates a similar traffic spike across the nation over the extended Independence Day holiday.
August is the most dangerous month of the year on U.S. roads, averaging 93 deaths per day in motor vehicle crashes. That’s the equivalent of a plane crash every day.
Put it all together, and July and August are the most dangerous months on the road for both teen and adult drivers.
If you’re hitting the road this week, take a minute for a summer driving safety review. If you are the parent of young drivers, review the importance of fully concentrating on the task of driving. Distracted driving – including the use of cell phones – is a huge problem, but it’s not the only one. Teenage passengers significantly increases the risk of fatalities for teen drivers.