Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for teens (15-18 years old) in the United States. Nationwide in 2019, there were 2,042 people killed in crashes involving a teen driver, of which 628 deaths were the teen driver. Louisiana State Police urge parents to have conversations with their teens about the important rules they need to follow to stay safe behind the wheel of a motor vehicle. These rules address the greatest dangers for teen drivers: alcohol, no seat belt use, distracted driving, speeding, and number of passengers in their vehicle.
Facts about Teen Driver Fatalities in Louisiana:
· In 2020, there were 95 teens (15-20 years old) killed in crashes
· In the same period, there were 8,287 teens injured in crashes
· Of these crashes, 188 involved alcohol
· The risk of motor vehicle crashes is highest among 16 – 19-year-olds
In an effort to combat these unexpected, permanent, and preventable tragedies, Louisiana State Police teamed up with University Medical Center in New Orleans over twenty years ago, and developed the Sudden Impact program. Through the Sudden Impact program, troopers and medical staff from area hospitals throughout the entire state are able to provide real-world experiences to new, inexperienced drivers in an effort to show them the reality of what can happen behind the wheel if poor decisions are made. This program gives young drivers the tools and needed knowledge to avoid getting in dangerous situations that can lead to an unexpected, permanent, and preventable tragedy.
For more information on the Sudden Impact program or other safe driving presentations available to schools, clubs, civic organizations or businesses, please contact your local Louisiana State Police Troop Public Information Officer at www.LSP.org under the “About Us” tab and use the interactive map located in “Troop Information”; you can also message us on our Facebook page.