When it comes to negligent driving, one of the top contributors to motor vehicle accidents is impaired driving. In 2020, over 11,000 people died in alcohol-related motor vehicle accidents, which accounts for about 30% of all traffic fatalities.
When it comes to driving while impaired, some groups have a higher tendency to get behind the wheel of a car after drinking or consuming mind-altering substances.
Why are teen and young adult drivers a higher risk than other demographics?
Teenagers and young adults tend to have less experience behind the wheel. Likewise, they have less experience with alcohol or other substances. They may not understand how little alcohol it takes to impair their judgment and feel they could operate a vehicle without a problem.
Kids tend to act more impulsively than their older counterparts. In addition, they tend to cave to social pressure. If they have friends drinking and driving, they will likely follow suit. The highest percentage of traffic fatalities involving alcohol-impaired drivers involved drivers between 21 and 34 years old.
How can parents and older adults help decrease drunk driving?
Parents and older adults must set the example to decrease instances of drunk driving Parents should encourage their kids to seek a rideshare or cab if they plan to drink. If a parent supplies alcohol to a minor and he or she ends up behind the wheel of a car and in an accident, the parent may have some responsibility for the accident.
When parents do not speak to their kids about alcohol, kids may have a higher chance of consuming alcohol and doing so irresponsibly.