Breaking Virginia Traffic Laws is Dangerous for Teen Drivers
The phone rings. It is your teenage son and his words hit like a ton of bricks: “Mom, I got a ticket and the cop says I have to go to court.” Your day is officially ruined, but your first frantic question is, “Are you alright?”
Virginia juvenile traffic law is tough and unforgiving for young drivers. With any luck, your son or daughter will simply get a ticket for a serious Virginia traffic offense and face the court for the offense alone. But too often teen drivers also have to deal with the pain and legal complications of an accident. Either way, you and your teen must understand just why Virginia juvenile traffic offenses are treated so seriously.
The Facts About Teen Drivers
Motor vehicle accidents kill more teenagers than any other cause. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regularly issues statistics on teen drivers. Here are some of its findings:
- In 2009, eight young people aged 16-19 died each day in car crashes.
- Your teenage son or daughter is four times more likely to wreck the car than an adult.
- While only 14% of the U.S. population is aged 15-24, male drivers of this age rack up 30% of the total costs for automobile injuries; young females come in just under this number at 28%.
- In 2009, the car accident death rate for male drivers and passengers ages 15-19 was almost two times higher than it was for females of the same ages.
- Teens are much more likely to engage in risky driving behaviors like not wearing seatbelts, speeding and ignoring hazardous driving conditions.
- In 2005, of the young male drivers ages 15-20 killed in car accidents, 37% were speeding and 26% were drinking.
- Almost three out of every ten teens interviewed in 2007 said they had ridden in a car with a driver that had been drinking in a one-month period.
- Half of all teenagers who were killed in car accidents in 2008 died between the hours of 3:00 p.m. and midnight; 56% of these deaths occurred on Friday, Saturday or Sunday.
- Fatal and injury crashes are reduced by up to 40% when 16-year-old drivers complete a graduated drivers’ licensing program.
In reaction to these statistics and many others, Virginia juvenile traffic violation laws were upgraded and the penalties made harsher.
What is the Parent of a Virginia Teen Driver to Do?
First, you must share the statistics with your young driver. Have many conversations with your teen about the dangers of driving and the responsibilities that come with a driver’s license. And, if your teen still manages to get into a situation that involves a serious juvenile driving offense in Virginia, get some help.
Joseph “Jeh” Hicks at Jarrell, Hicks & Waldman, PC will fight to protect your child’s rights using the most comprehensive legal options available to him. He will be your personal legal counsel throughout the process. To get started, call our Spotsylvania law offices toll free today at 888-783-9701. Also be sure to order a copy of our free book, working title, which deals with an overview of serious driving offenses.