Which age group has the most car accidents in Kansas? Who is most likely to suffer a serious injury or fatality when a crash occurs? In 2016, 99,794 drivers in Kansas were involved in automobile accidents. 554 of these caused fatalities and 23,153 resulted in a car wreck injury. Across the state, approximately 53% of all motor vehicle accidents in Kansas involve drivers between the ages of 15 and 39. Obviously, younger drivers have less experience. In cases where you have been injured in a car accident, motorcycle accident, truck accident or bicycle accident with a driver under 16 then the case presents a unique case where Kansas law makes the parent directly liable for the younger driver they furnished the car to. If the child is 16 years of age a different rule applies and there may be a negligent entrustment claim in either age group. Indeed, in any case where a parent or relative provides a vehicle to a younger family member, a negligent entrustment claim may possible be brought in addition to the normal negligence claims.
Underage drivers under 15 years of age were involved in 153 accidents. Of these, 3 were fatal and 57 caused personal injuries. Novice 15 year old drivers driving on learners permits or on a restricted drivers license were involved in 11,997 accidents. These accidents caused 50 fatalities and 3,934 injuries. Driver inexperience and distracted driving are leading causes of accidents within this demographic. Distracted driving or using a cell phone, phone app, mapping on a phone and texting are likely causes of accidents with younger drivers. Distracted driving was responsible for 635 accidents within this demographic. Of these, 72 were caused by electronic devices and 181 were caused by cell phones; a further 381 were caused by "other" distractions including events such as "rubbernecking," conversations with passengers, eating/drinking, etc. Recently, national news showed a younger driver taking photographs of her body and sending them to her boyfriend on SnapChat when she hit another driver at high speeds.
Drivers between the ages of 20 and 24 were involved in 10,417 crashes. Of these, 56 were fatal and 3,257 caused personal injuries. This is the largest number of accidents, injuries, and fatalities of all recorded demographics in Kansas. Drivers within this demographic are also more likely to engage in dangerous driving behaviors including driving while distracted, driving while drowsy, and driving while intoxicated. Insurance carriers know that younger drivers have more accidents and thus, insurance premiums are usually higher for younger drivers. Statewide, drivers within this demographic were involved in 161 accidents involving cell phone distractions in 2016, 77 involving electronic driving distractions, and 345 involving "other distractions."
Those most likely to be involved in an alcohol related fatality or injury causing demographic were drivers who were 28-years-old. Drivers within this demographic were involved in 1,997 accidents that caused 8 fatalities and 744 personal injuries. These were followed by drivers who were 24-years-old who were involved in 2,467 accidents; of which, 101, or 4%, were alcohol impaired at the time of the crash. In all, alcohol is a factor in 4.2% of accidents involving drivers under the age of 19. By comparison, it is a factor in 19.5% of the total number of fatality or injury accidents involving drivers between the ages of 19 to 24. Between the ages of 21 to 30, 3.4% and 4.2% of accidents within each age group involved impaired drivers. One can draw a correlation between age, auto accidents and the consumption of alcohol.
Elderly drivers are also at risk of suffering a car wreck injury or wrongful death. In 2016, drivers aged 70 and older were involved in 6,257 accidents. Of these, 74 were fatality accidents and 1,467 caused a car wreck injury. Within the broader demographic of elderly drivers, those between the ages of 70 and 74 were at the greatest risk and were involved in 44% of accidents. I had a case where a 94 year old woman had her third accident. Her children made her stop driving. She ran over a motorcycle rider and we had a wild 3 hour deposition where she wanted to argue about not having been negligent. Older drivers can be very negligent due to their driving at speeds slower than surrounding traffic which causes people to pass due to the hazard of a slow moving driver, ultimately resulting in traffic congestion and accidents. Statistically, drivers between the ages of 70 and 95+ are least likely to be involved in a distracted driving accident. In total, only 152 accidents in 2016 involving drivers within this demographic involved distracted driving.
Brad Pistotnik Law represents clients in Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Texas, Florida, Missouri, and Illinois who experience a car wreck injury. Whether the accident occurred in Wichita, Garden City, Liberal, Ulysses, Goodland, Satanta, Bird City, Ness City, Scott City, Colby, Hays, Phillipsburg, Manhattan, Gardner, Independence Township, McPherson, Winfield, Saint Joseph, North Platte, Grand Island, Lincoln, Independence, Enid, Moore, Norman, Lawton, Pratt, Peoria, Rockford, Joliet, Kearney, Springfield, Chicago, Dallas, Waco, Amarillo, El Paso, Joplin, Pensacola, Jacksonville, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Houston, Warrensburg, McKinney, Bonner Springs, Shawnee, Leawood, Kansas City, Liberty, North Kansas City, Leavenworth, Pittsburg, Manhattan, Oklahoma City, Wellington, San Antonio, or elsewhere in these states, our team works to secure the compensation our clients need to recover from a car wreck injury.
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