ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The “100 Deadliest Days” is the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day when fatal crashes increase dramatically. In a press release, AAA said, “Nationwide, more than 7,038 people died in crashes involving teen drivers during the ‘100 Deadliest Days’ over a ten-year period from 2010 to 2019.”
In that decade, AAA says in New York State, an average of 196 people died in crashes involving teen drivers during that 100-day window. That’s about seven lives lost per day over each of those summers.
“So AAA is just raising awareness,” says April Engram with AAA. “We want everyone to be extra safe on the roads, especially our teens.”
Engram says a new AAA study shows a lot of distraction and bravado behind the wheel, for teens and seasoned drivers alike.
“And the most common were speeding, texting, and running red lights,” says Engram.
The biggest point AAA wants to make this year is on the constant distraction. If possible, you might want to try putting your cellphone out of sight and out of reach when you drive, especially as more hit the road post-pandemic. Experts say it’s time to separate the phone from driving.
“Parents have plenty to be concerned about as their teen hits the road this summer,” said Elizabeth Carey, AAA Western and Central New York’s director of PR & Corporate Communications. “Teens are faced with more distractions than ever before, leading to deadly mistakes, and parents are the best line of defense to keep everyone safe behind the wheel.”
AAA went on to say, “Teens should store phones out of reach, mind speed limits, and stay away from impairing substances such as alcohol and marijuana.”
Sgt. Christopher Rahn with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office says drugs and alcohol absolutely do not mix behind the wheel.
“I would advise them not to drive at all if they’re drinking or using drugs, especially with the new marijuana laws,” says Sgt. Rahn.
Sgt. Rahn also says many already know, if you get caught, fines are involved, you could face jail time, and lose your license. But that doesn’t always seem to sink in…especially when it comes to teens in large groups cruising around in the summer.
“If you see something say something. If you think that your friends been drinking or doing drugs…Because your life’s on the line too,” he says.