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Former high school football star’s death illustrates risk to teen drivers involved in Florida car accidents

A North Miami resident and University of Wyoming freshman linebacker was killed and three of his fellow teammates were injured when their car rolled during an early morning one-car accident in Colorado, the Miami Herald reports.

The 19-year-old is remembered as a Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna football star and the 2009 All-Broward County linebacker. According to police reports, it is believed the driver fell asleep and there is no evidence that drugs or alcohol played a role in the accident.

As noted in an earlier post to our South Florida Injury Lawyer blog, car accidents are the leading cause of death for teens aged 15-20 and responsible for one in three deaths in this age group. In 2008, 2,739 teenagers were killed in car accidents nationwide, 195 in Florida car accidents.

In fact, teen drivers in Florida are involved in more car accidents and more fatal car accidents than anywhere else in the nation. Florida teens also rank second in the nation for the number of alcohol-related crashes, the Florida Sheriffs Association reports.

Per mile, teen drivers are four times more likely than older drivers to crash. In 2008 alone, more than 350,000 teenager drivers and passengers across the U.S. were injured badly enough to require emergency care, according to the Center for Disease Control.

Of all teen drivers, males, teen drivers with teen passengers and newly licensed teens are most likely to be killed or injured in a car accident. Factors that add risk to teen driving include: inexperience and underestimation of dangerous situations; speeding; risky driving; drinking alcohol and driving; and not wearing a seat belt.

In 2009, there were 772,910 licensed Florida drivers aged 15-19 involved in 29,482 reported Florida car accidents that claimed 242 lives, an increase of almost 50 fatalities over 2008. This same age group was involved in 849 alcohol-related car accidents that killed 127, the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicle reports.

The Palm Beach car accident attorneys at Freeman & Mallard have been successfully and aggressively representing car accident victims and their families in Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, and Ft. Pierce /Port St. Lucie for years. Call us today to schedule a no-obligation appointment to discuss your case at 1-800-529-2368.

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