While outsiders may not recognize it as such, San Diego is very much a college town. With prominent universities located throughout the city, including University of California San Diego (UCSD), University of San Diego, San Diego State University, and more, San Diegans are well aware that our traffic patterns are in large part determined by school schedules, and that there’s an uptick in congestion when school is in session.
Unfortunately, younger drivers tend to be among the most dangerous on the road. Although there are many benefits to being located near a major university, that’s one serious drawback. Is there anything San Diego residents can do to protect themselves from this danger?
College-Age Drivers Pose a Threat
The fact is that young drivers, in the 16-24 range, are among the groups most likely to be involved in a crash. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, motor vehicle crashes are the number one cause of death for young people between the ages of 4 and 34. Teenagers are between two to three times more likely to be in a fatal crash than the most experienced drivers. The study predicted that between 2003 and 2012, more than 100,000 young people would die in vehicle crashes.
Why the high fatality rate and disproportionate number of accidents for young drivers? A number of factors. Obviously, young drivers are less experienced than drivers who’ve been doing it for decades. Combine that inexperience with the fact that many college students come from other cities, states, or even countries, which means they’ll be less familiar with our roads and intersections.
But the risk factors may also include some particular aspects of college life. Students spend many late nights studying for exams and writing term papers, meaning they are more likely to be driving while fatigued. Students are also more likely to be aggressive drivers, whether due to immaturity, stress, or some other reason. Moreover, distracted driving tends to be common among young drivers as well.
Of course, we all know that partying is a big part of the college lifestyle, and this is especially true in San Diego, which has a reputation as a party town. Unfortunately, this means that there are a lot of students abusing drugs and alcohol and making the decision to drive while impaired. This not only puts their own lives in danger, but the lives of everyone sharing the road with them.
San Diego Has Notorious Traffic Issues
Residents of San Diego know all about the heavy traffic that is a daily ritual of our city. With three major interstates—the 5, 8, and 15—connecting Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Tijuana through San Diego, we also get a high number of commuters, travelers, and commercial drivers passing through. All of this traffic is a toxic combination.
The INRIX 2017 Global Traffic Scorecard ranked San Diego 45th out of 1,360 cities on its list of the most congested metropolitan areas in the world. Some of the worst spots in San Diego include Interstate 805 north at Clairemont Mesa Boulevard, State Route 67 at Mussey Grade Road, and State Route 163 at Robinson Avenue. It’s no wonder that young drivers, especially those from out of town, would carry an increased risk of being involved in a serious accident.
California Laws Protect Victims
Just because we expect younger drivers to be more involved in accidents doesn’t mean it’s a good excuse. Nor should it matter if the driver is unfamiliar with the area. Being young and inexperienced means that you should drive more cautiously. Unfortunately, this is often not the case.
If you’ve been the victim of a serious car collision, you’re probably worried about receiving full compensation for your vehicle repairs, injuries, and any other expenses. Don’t forget; the driver of the vehicle who caused the accident may not be the only party at fault. If she was coming from a university-sanctioned event, such as a basketball game, concert, or party, and she was intoxicated at the time of the accident, someone else may also be to blame for what happened to you.
After a crash, you need a top-rated San Diego car accident attorney advocating on your behalf. Call the friendly staff at Jurewitz Law Group today at (888) 233-5020 to schedule a free consultation. If we take your case, you owe use nothing until we get you that full compensation.
Ross Jurewitz is the founder and managing lawyer of the Jurewitz Law Group, a San Diego personal injury attorney law firm. These San Diego injury accident lawyers specialize in helping people seriously injured in a variety of accidents throughout San Diego County and California.
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