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AAA: The 100 Deadliest Days for Teen Drivers Have Begun

Over 30 percent of deaths involving teen drivers occur between Memorial Day and Labor Day

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AAA and Cambridge Mobile Telematics (CMT), the world’s largest telematics service provider, are teaming up to prevent deaths and injuries from teen driver crashes this summer. Nationwide, more than 30 percent of deaths involving teen drivers occur during what’s called the “100 Deadliest Days” – a period that runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

Traffic crashes are the leading cause of death for teens ages 16-19. For every mile driven, new teen drivers (ages 16 – 17) are three times more likely to be involved in a deadly crash compared to adults.

National Teen Driver Statistics:

  • From 2012 to 2021, 7,316 people nationwide died in teen driver-related summertime crashes.
  • An average of 2,108 teens are involved in deadly crashes, every year.
    • 660 (31%) of those occur during the 100 Deadliest Days.
  • In 2021 900 people died in teen driver-related summertime crashes.
    • 6% more than 2020 and 25%  more than 2019.


The summer months are an especially dangerous time for teens because they often have more freedom, are driving with other young people, and they may not fully understand the potential risks they face while on the road,” said Dan Goodman, manager of public affairs for AAA Northern New England. “However, parents and guardians can play a crucial role in keeping young drivers safe by enforcing rules of the road, ensuring teens follow state graduated driver licensing laws, and by being a good role model when behind the wheel themselves.”

Three common causes of deadly crashes for teen drivers are speeding, distraction and not wearing seatbelts. According to research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, new teen drivers ages 16-17 are three times as likely as adults to be involved in a deadly crash. Speeding is a factor in nearly 30 percent of fatal crashes involving teen drivers.

According to newly released data by CMT, from 2020 through 2022, time spent speeding increased by 5% during the 100 Deadliest Days compared to 30 days before and 30 days after that period.

Distracted driving is also an increasing danger contributing to teen driver crashes during the 100 Deadliest Days. According to a new CMT report called “The State of Distracted Driving in 2023 & the Future of Road Safety,” driver distraction has surged by 23% since 2020 on America’s roadways. CMT estimates that the increase in distracted driving caused an additional 420,000 crashes, 1,000 fatalities, and $10 billion in damages to the U.S. economy in 2022.

CMT’s research also found that phone screen interaction — including texting, emailing, social media, and app use — increased by 5% during the 100 Deadliest Days. CMT estimates this increase in distraction would cause an additional 27,000 crashes, 60 fatalities, and $650 million in economic damage during the 100 Deadliest Days.

“By almost every metric CMT measures, distracted driving is more present than ever on U.S. roadways,” said Ryan McMahon, CMT’s SVP of Strategy. “Unfortunately, both speeding and distraction have surged during the 100 Deadliest Days. By identifying the risky behaviors that lead to crashes, we hope drivers will slow down and focus on the road, preventing crashes before they happen.”

To keep roads safer this summer, AAA encourages parents and guardians to:

  • Talk with teens early and often about abstaining from dangerous behavior behind the wheel, such as speeding, impairment, and distracted driving.
  • Teach by example and be a good role model. Minimize risky behavior when driving because young people are watching what adults do.
  • Establish a parent-teen driving agreement that sets family rules for teen drivers.
  • Ensure teens follow California’s Graduated Driver Licensing laws, which requires:
  • A minimum six-month learner’s permit period and parent/guardian certification that the teen driver completed at least 50 hours of supervised driving practice, including 10 hours at night
  • A teen driving curfew between 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. for 12 months during the provisional license, unless with a licensed adult (25 years or older)
  • A ban on passengers under age 20 during the provisional license period, unless accompanied by a licensed adult (25 years or older)

Click here for more tips to prevent teen-driver crashes and encourage safe driving habits this summer.


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AAA Northern New England is a member club affiliated with the American Automobile Association (AAA) national federation and serves members in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont.