The Fairfax County Police have released a map that outlines all 1,874 reported crashes involving youth drivers in 2015.
Said police: “Each dot has its own sad story; from parking lot fender benders to crashes with property damage, vehicle damage, personal injury and death.”
The purpose of showing the stats in a graphic (see below) is part of a police campaign to encourage safe teen driving as summer approaches.
Consider these topics, police say:
Driving sober (free from alcohol and/or drugs): Police say prevention is key and impairment begins with the first drink. Besides that, it is unlawful for anyone under 21 to operate any motor vehicle after illegally consuming alcohol. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), car crashes are the leading cause of death for teens, and about a quarter of those crashes involve an underage drinking driver. NHTSA also reports that kids who start drinking young are seven times more likely to be in an alcohol-related crash.
Driving in inclement conditions (e.g. rain, fog, snow): Talk about safe speeds for weather conditions, driving on ice and other weather conditions.
Vehicle equipment safety: Operable windshield wipers, horn, brakes, lighting are just examples of a few considerations when keeping a vehicle functioning, safe, and legal while increasing safety for everyone on our roadways, police said.
Distracted driving: Texting and driving is illegal in Virginia and most other states now, and that mobile phones or other devices may be illegal to use period depending on your age. Distracted driving is not only texting, it is talking to passengers, operating a radio or GPS, doing makeup or hair…it is any behavior that detracts from the primary function of driving.
Seatbelt use: Use them every time.
See more from Fairfax County Police, including laws for teen drivers, on Fairfax County Police’s news blog.