Jim Adler | The Tough, Smart Lawyer
By Jim Adler July 10, 2015

Considering the accident rates for young and old age groups, you may have asked, “Are teen drivers more dangerous than older drivers?” The answers may surprise you.

While older drivers are more prone to wrecks due to weakened eyesight, slower reactions and other driving impairments, teen drivers aged 16 to 19 have a higher risk of crashing than any other age group. In fact, teens 16 to 19 are almost three times more likely to be in a fatal crash than drivers 20 and older.

Yet statistics show both teens and older drivers are vulnerable in crashes.

Senior Citizen Driving Statistics

In 2012, nearly 36 million senior citizens 65 and older held valid drivers licenses. In that year, over 5,560 older Americans were killed and over 214,000 were hurt in traffic collisions.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), car accident risk for senior citizens rises with each year. In fact, fatal crash rates rise markedly beginning in drivers’ early 70s, and crash rates for older Americans are highest for drivers 85 and older.

However, these statistics don’t necessarily mean that such drivers have a greater chance of causing an accident. Rather, the CDC declares that older drivers, given their age, are more prone to injury and death when they are in a crash (even considering the crash may be due to another driver). Even so, the agency says declining cognitive functioning, physical abilities and vision due to advanced age can contribute to crashes.

Other factors favor older drivers, including their tendency to restrict their driving during night hours and in bad weather and to drive fewer miles than younger drivers. Senior citizen drivers also are less prone to drinking and driving. Only 7% of older drivers in fatal crashes in 2012 had an 0.08 BAC or higher, while 24% of drivers 21 to 64 years old in fatal crashes were over the legal limit.

Teen Driving Statistics

The CDC says traffic collisions are the No. 1 cause of death for teens in America. On average, 7 teenagers between 16 and 19 years old are killed every day due to motor vehicle crashes. In 2011, 2,650 teens lost their lives and 292,000 were treated in emergency rooms following auto crashes.

Persons 15 to 24 years old represent 14% of the United States’ population, but account for 30% of the total costs of car wreck injuries among males and 28% among females.

The CDC also found that teens are least likely to wear a seatbelt, reporting 55% of high school students ignoring this potentially life-saving safety measure. Among drivers 15-20 years old who died in crashes in 2012 after drinking and driving, 71% weren’t wearing a seatbelt.

Teens also are more likely to speed and tailgate, particularly when male teen passengers are in the vehicle. In fact, having other teens as passengers has shown to elevate teens’ driving risks, and the death rate for male drivers with teen passengers is nearly twice that of female drivers with teen passengers.

Among males from 15 to 20 years old who were in fatal wrecks in 2012, 37% were speeding and 25% had been drinking.

Reckless driving, drowsy driving, distracted driving, night driving and driving inexperience also contribute to teen crashes.

Preventing Teen, Senior Crashes

As for preventing teen and senior citizen crashes, many strategies can help, especially for teen drivers, since older drivers’ physical and mental impairments may not be correctable.

Unlike teens, older drivers already tend to use seat belts more readily, with almost 80% reporting seat belt use. Older Americans also can increase their driving safety by getting an eye checkup at least once yearly and wearing glasses as needed.

In addition, older drivers can leave a large following distance for the car in front of them; drive in good weather and in daylight; exercise to enhance flexibility and strength; plan a route before driving; and ask their physicians to assess their medications in terms of side effects — such as drowsiness — which could impair their driving.

Older Americans also can avoid distractions while they’re at the wheel, and they can consider using public transportation or riding with a friend instead of driving themselves.

As for teens, many of their accidents are preventable and their risks can be reduced starting with using seat belts, which can cut deaths and serious crash injuries in half. Avoiding drinking and driving also boosts teens’ chances, as well as acquiring more experience in proper driving. For this reason, Texas employs a graduated driver licensing (GDL) program for drivers under 18.

Graduated driver licensing mandates novice teen drivers get supervision by experienced drivers during their first months at the wheel. As part of Texas’ GDL, new drivers must drive for at least six months with an instructional or learner license — while accompanied by a person 21 or older — before gaining a provisional license.

With a provisional license, for 12 months those under 18 may not drive with more than one person under age 21 who isn’t a family member, and not between midnight and 5 a.m. except for emergencies, employment or sanctioned school activities. They also must not use a cell phone or other wireless communications device while driving except in emergencies.

Overall, teen drivers are not safer than older drivers, but drivers of all age groups always can improve.

FREE Case Review

Google Reviews

I went to the office and everyone was so considerate and professional , so my first impression was good, I felt like I was in good hands. Then I received a call from Vanessa Garcia, she was on top of EVERYTHING! I never had to call her, she always called me. She even called to see how I was doing , and if I needed help with anything. That is why I have absolutely no worries.read more
13:42 01 Jun 17
My lawyer Bill Adler and case manager Iris Sanchez are amazing! They constantly call and check on you . They keep you up to date through the process. They care about you as a person and not just a client. The wreck was a life changing experience that I've never been through before. I'm just glad I had the right people like Bill Adler and Iris Sanchez to help me through it. Truly satisfied.Thanks and God bless y'all!read more
Tierra Clark
Tierra Clark
18:52 19 May 17
I was dropped from a previous law firm regarding my case before I called Jim Adler. They immediately took up my case and worked hard on it - I was always up to date with each step they took and the benefits or consequences of each. In the end, I am highly satisfied with the outcome and would not have it any other way. It took some time but I truly appreciate and want to thank everybody who helped me on this journey and worked tirelessly on it.read more
Tori Barroga
Tori Barroga
14:17 11 May 17
I am a Patrol Deputy for the Sheriff Office and while working one night, a drunk driver crossed the center stripe on the highway and struck my patrol vehicle head on with his pick up truck. Needless to say we (the drunk driver and I) were both lucky to survive, as the accident occurred at highway speeds. Following my release from the hospital, I knew that I would need to have someone represent me. My employer was happy to represent me in regards to prosecuting the driver for criminal charges but, can do little in respect to the recovery of financial losses for medical bills, pain and discomfort, time lost from work etc... This is how my relationship with Jim Adler and Associates began. Yep, you probably guessed correctly when you think of what made me choose the "Texas Hammer" to represent me. Those half obnoxious, half way entertaining commercials and radio announcements most Texans have been seeing and hearing on the TV and radio for years instantly came to mind. Yes, I wanted to "hammer" this S.O.B. for trying to kill me but, more importantly I was worried about the costs associated with the life long injuries I had sustained as a result of this drunk driver's negligent behavior. I contacted Jim Adler and Associates and so began our relationship. I was immediately surprised by the prompt attention and the expression of genuine concern for my well being that I received from the employees of Jim Adler's office. Now as you can imagine, lawyers are not a breed that is held in very high regard by people in my profession but, my experiences with Jim Adler's office and his employees have forced me to amend my way of thinking, at least on the civil side of the house anyway. I have to chuckle when I say that because my experience as a client of Jim Adler's firm has been exceptionally pleasant. So before I venture down one of the stereotypical and infinite number of rabbit holes associated with the relationship between members of law enforcement and lawyers; I will do my best to stay focused on my experience with Jim Adler & Associates. Upon being informed that my case had been accepted by Jim Adler's office; I was contacted by Iris Sanchez who informed me that she was to be my case manager and any questions, comments and concerns could be directed to her. I was pleasantly surprised to receive regular calls from Iris assisting with my medical appointments and future follow up appointments. Iris had informed me that Jim Adler's son, Bill Adler would be handling my case and I was even more surprised to receive several calls from Bill to discuss my case. Now you might be thinking "what's the big deal" with the person who is representing you contacting you? In reality, you are correct in that it isn't a big deal but, what is noteworthy and what separates Jim Adler's Office from the multitude of other lawyers is the genuine expressions of concern and the desire Bill Adler conveyed to me to do their best to help me. I felt an immediate connection and instantly realized I had made the correct choice in contacting Jim Adler & Associates to handle my case. One thing I think lawyers and police officers can agree on is the proverbial wheels of justice turn very slowly. Months go by and our professional relationship is never neglected. Through the unwavering attention of Iris Sanchez and Bill Adler himself, I never felt "out of the loop" so to speak and always had a clear understanding of where my case was at in regards to the legal process. In conclusion, I know my brief description of my experiences with Bill Adler and, his assistant Iris Sanchez, cannot provide the credit they deserve. Together they have done an outstanding job representing their firm/employer. If you are seeking a great firm to represent your legal interests and, take comfort in establishing a professional relationship that feels more like a friendship than a casual business acquaintance, then I highly suggest Jim Adler & Associates.read more
Erick Becker
Erick Becker
01:20 06 May 17
I am very happy with Jim Adler & Associates. I did not know anyone who has ever used the Law Firm before. The staff is very friendly and treated me as if I were family. At times it got very stressful being without a job. They helped me when I was confused about the process. Mrs. Theresa Rodriguez stayed in contact with me constantly. Checking on me to see how I was doing and to let me know how things were going on there end. The Attorneys that handled my case know exactly what they are doing to take good care of me. Thank You so much Attorney's Mr.Michael Gomez and Mr.Trey Smith.read more
Bernard Orozco
Bernard Orozco
17:16 23 Feb 17
Jim Adler only offer nothing less than a great experience. They are a very well-established organization. They are outstanding on keeping you up to date with cases. There's no beating around the bush with this organization as they are only straight forward with the whole process. They treat their customers like family as well as go above and beyond to fight cases for you only leaving you with nothing but the best experience. Easy 5-star rated organization. I would highly recommend this one organization you not look over.read more
Lorenzo Preston
Lorenzo Preston
17:23 26 Jan 17
If you’ve been seriously injured, get The Tough, Smart Lawyer! ®
Get Help Right Now
Principal Office Houston, TX