Teenage motorists in Tennessee are already at a disadvantage when they are on the roads because of their inexperience. However, that does not seem to stop them from driving dangerously. Many of them drive their friends around, compromising their ability to safely operate their vehicles even further. Teens are already the highest risk group on the roads. They are several times more likely to be involved in car accidents, sustain injuries and die than adult motorists. With motor vehicle wrecks being the leading cause of death for adolescent drivers, more people should pay attention to the consequences when teen drivers have passengers.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, it was found that when teen drivers had multiple passengers in their vehicles they were more likely to engage in horseplay and loud conversations, except when some of those people were siblings. Other reckless driving behaviors that adolescent motorists were likely to participate in include speeding, erratic driving and tailgating.
Male drivers face an increased compulsion to drive recklessly when their friends are with them, states Time. Female drivers rarely engaged in aggressive driving behavior leading to crashes. However, male motorists were more likely to act aggressively and perform illegal driving maneuvers.
Many states have graduated driving laws in place for teen drivers to protect against this type of behavior, such as not allowing them to drive with teen passengers.
Because of their lack of experience, many teen drivers are not aware of dangerous driving with passengers can be. Until they gain more experience and are less influenced by distractions in their driving environments, they should follow the state’s graduated driving laws regarding passengers.