Teenagers in California who obtain their driver’s license may enjoy their newfound freedom. However, their inexperience behind the wheel as well as a general sense of invincibility can lead them to engage in risky behaviors while driving. One dangerous behavior teen drivers could engage in that could ultimately cause a car accident is texting and driving.
A recent study was conducted that examined whether teen drivers were likely to engage in texting and driving. The study reports that almost 40 percent of respondents age 14 and above had engaged in texting and driving one time or more over the past month. Teens in states with a lower minimum age at which they could obtain their learner’s permit and teens in states where many students drove were more likely to engage in texting and driving. The prevalence of texting and driving increased twofold between ages 15 and 16 and there was a substantial uptick at age 17 and older.
While these numbers may be concerning, it should be noted that that percentage is lower than the percentage of adults who text while driving, at least according to one survey. A 2014 survey reports that, while 43 percent of teen respondents admitted to texting and driving, 49 percent of adult respondents also admitted to texting and driving.
In the end, whether it is a teen driver or an adult driver who is texting while behind the wheel, such distractions can easily lead to a motor vehicle accident. While motorists understand the dangers of texting and driving, this doesn’t mean they will not engage in this risky behavior. When a distracted driver causes a car crash, they could wind up injuring or killing innocent people. Texting while driving could be considered negligence in a personal injury claim if it can be shown that doing so breached the driver’s duty of care, which caused the accident and the resulting damages. Therefore, for the safety of all, drivers should put down their cellphone and wait until they are done driving before responding to that text message.