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AAA: About 18 New Yorkers die in crashes involving teens during the summer each year

The period from Memorial Day to Labor Day has been dubbed the "100 Deadliest Days."
Credit: Antonioguillem - stock.adobe.com

BUFFALO, N.Y. — The time between Memorial Day and Labor Day has been titled the "100 Deadliest Days" because of a nationwide increase in fatal teen crashes.

The AAA found that in New York State, 183 people have died during that period from 2011 to 2020. For the rest of the nine months in the year, 298 people were killed over that 10 year period.

Nationwide, 7,124 people died in teen driver-related summertime crashes during the same 10 year period. That averages out to more than seven people dying in crashes each day of the summer.

AAA is partnering with the New York State Police to raise awareness of traffic safety during the summer time.

“Young drivers in high school and college look forward to the summer season and await newfound freedom with a break from school,” said New York State Police Trooper Mark O’Donnell, public information officer for Troop E. “The state police urge parents to talk to their young drivers about traffic safety and serve as good role models as well.”

Teen drivers are at a higher risk of crashed because of their inexperience, AAA says.

The latest AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety Culture Index found that 72% of teen drivers have admitted to do one of the following behaviors in the past 30 days:

  • Driving 10 mph over the speed limit on a residential street (47%)
  • Driving 15 mph over the speed limit on a freeway (40%)
  • Texting (35%)
  • Red-light running (32%)
  • Aggressive driving (31%)
  • Drowsy driving (25%)
  • Driving without a seatbelt (17%)

AAA is advising parents to talk to teens early about avoiding risking behaviors while driving, to teach by example, and make a parent-teen driving agreement setting family rules for driving.

“Young drivers have grown up with a phone in their hand. Now is the time to separate that phone use from driving – mobile devices have no place behind the wheel,” said Mike Formanowicz, driver training manager at AAA Western and Central New York. “We encourage all motorists to drive distraction free.”

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