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Teenager at the wheel in car accident that injures family of four

Teenage drivers have the reputation of being dangerous drivers. Teen drivers are less likely to wear their seatbelts, often underestimate dangerous situations, are easily distracted by their friends or mobile phones, and are more likely to make risky decisions. In addition, teen drivers simply have less practice on the road than more experienced older drivers.

A Maryland family of four and a second driver discovered the risk of an inexperienced teenage driver at the wheel recently when they were involved in a serious car accident. The family was driving on US 301 in a Honda Pilot with the teenage driver at the wheel, when the teenager merged into the path of a Nissan Sentra that was travelling in the fast lane. The teenager had his learner's permit and was travelling with his brother and his parents.

The Pilot struck the passenger side of the Sentra and rolled over onto the shoulder. The teenager and his brother were transported to the hospital by ambulance and the parents were flown to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma in Baltimore. The driver of the Sentra was luckily unharmed but her car suffered damages.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the risk of a car accident is higher among teenage drivers than any other age group. Furthermore, if there is a passenger in the car with the teenage driver, the risk of a crash increases, the more passengers the higher the risk. Unfortunately that is true for fatal car accidents as well, where teenagers are three times more likely than all other drivers to be in a fatal crash.

Just because a driver is a teenager does not mean that they escape liability when they cause a car accident. Like any other driver, teenagers must take reasonable care to avoid causing harm to others on the road. When a teenager is negligent behind the wheel, the injured parties may recover compensation for the damages.

Source: Bay Times, "Family of four injured in two-car accident," Jordan Schatz, June 9, 2013

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