Active parental involvement combined with West Virginia's graduated licensing system can give teens the practice they need to become better drivers and can help prevent teen driving accidents in West Virginia. If you or your teen has been injured in an accident, you'll need to contact a Clarksburg car accident lawyer to discuss your case.
Understanding the Graduated Licensing System
West Virginia has put a graduated licensing system into place to help teens gain driving experience before they are given full driving privileges. This system, meant to benefit drivers younger than 18, has the added advantage of rallying parental involvement, which further encourages safety.
There are three licensing levels for teens in West Virginia:
- Level 1 - with this permit, teens must be at least 15 years old and may only drive when accompanied by a driver age 21 or older. Moreover, level one drivers may only drive between 5 a.m. and 11 p.m. and travel with only 2 other passengers (in addition to the supervising adult) in the vehicle.
- Level 2 - after 50 hours of driving practice, teens can advance to level 2, which allows them to drive unsupervised between 5 a.m. and 10 p.m. (with additional driving exceptions) and may travel with up to three unrelated teenager passengers.
- Level 3 - drivers at least 17 years old who've had their level 2 license and have received no traffic convictions for at least a year may graduate to a level 3 license, which releases all previous driving restrictions.
Preventing Teen Driving Distractions
Nearly half a million people a year are injured in car accidents that involved distracted driving, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Taking measures that discourage distracted driving in teens will greatly reduce the changes of teen driving accidents in West Virginia.
There are several things parents can do to help their teens avoid distracted driving behaviors:
- Electronic Devices - demonstrate to teens how to pull off in a driveway or parking lot to answer calls, handle MP3 players or text their friends, instead of performing these actions on the road.
- Music - inform teens of the dangers of excessively loud music while driving, including how it makes hearing car horns and ambulances difficult, how it distracts driving, and of the fact that wearing headphones while driving is illegal.
- Example - one of the best ways to encourage safe teen driving behaviors is for parents to set a good example by dealing appropriately with distractions on a consistent basis.
Because distracted driving and general inexperience greatly contributes to teen accidents, this is where the focus should be when parents and legislators try to improve teen driving safety.
If you or your teen has been involved in an accident, contact a Clarksburg car accident lawyer to explain your case and to see if you should file a personal injury claim.
Contact a Clarksburg Car Accident Lawyer
Unfortunately, car accidents are a regular occurrence on Clarksburg roadways such as I-79, I-77, Route 50, Route 33, and I-68. In fact, our state averages more than 40,000 car crashes, more than 400 deaths, and more than 11,000 serious injuries each year. If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in a teen driving accident in West Virginia, order a FREE copy of our consumer guide, The 7 Biggest Mistakes that Can Wreck Your West Virginia Car Accident Claim then contact the Clarksburg personal injury attorneys at The Miley Legal Group for a FREE consultation - 1-304-326-1800.