As teens go back to school this fall, it may mean more time behind the wheel. Whether driving to and from school or after school sporting practices or other events, teens are busy during back-to-school season.

During this time, teens often suffer from a lack of sleep. Many teenagers stay up too late doing homework, talking to friends, playing video games, or participating in social media that they don’t get enough sleep. Unfortunately, many teens only get four or five hours of sleep instead of the eight hours recommended for people in this age group.  When they have to wake in the wee hours of the morning to get ready for school, they often suffer from sleep deprivation.

When sleep-deprived teens take the wheel, they are at an increased risk of getting into a Fulton County car crash. Studies show that driving while sleepy can impair drivers’ vision and judgment, decrease their reaction times, and increase their risk of crashing. In fact, driving drowsy has the same effects as driving intoxicated.

Safety Tip: Parents should discuss with their teen drivers the importance of having a good night’s sleep.

Unfortunately, car accidents in Georgia and nationwide are still the leading cause of death for teenagers, and drowsy driving and distracted driving are two of the biggest causes of teen driving accidents. Sadly, teens are more likely to use cellphones behind the wheel than any other age group, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

There is no denying that teens like being on their phones and using them to text, talk, email, tweet, and post Facebook comments. Unfortunately, cellphones and driving do not mix. When drivers take their eyes off the road for a couple of seconds to send or read a text message, it is compared to driving the entire length of a football field blindfolded.

Because we live in a world full of mobile technology in which drivers tend to have one hand on the wheel and the other on their cellphone, distracted driving accidents frequently occur.

Safety Tip: Parents should discuss with their teen drivers the dangers of distracted driving and install a cellphone app that will restrict teen cellphone use while the car is moving.

When teen drivers—essentially all drivers—avoid texting, talking or using their cell phones entirely while driving, and get a good night’s sleep, they can reduce their chances of being in a Georgia car accident.

If you have suffered injuries in a crash caused by a drowsy or distracted driver, contact an experienced Fulton County accident attorney at the Law Offices of Shane Smith at 770.487.8999 for a free consultation today.

Shane Smith
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Advocate for the Seriously Injured in Georgia

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