Fair or not, teenage drivers have a bad reputation. While some suggest that it is because of inexperience and others speculate that teenage drivers may just lack the maturity to operate vehicles safely, many people in Costa Mesa and the rest of Orange County probably have the idea that teen drivers are often involved and even cause serious accidents.
Although it is true that teen drivers can and often do cause car accidents because of distraction or risky behavior behind the wheel, they are, in fact, not the age group of drivers most likely to be involved in a fatal accident.
Since about 2010, the age group most likely to be involved in a fatal accident was those drivers between 20 and 34. Collectively, this group of drivers had over 20 drivers involved in fatal accidents per 100,000 people. While being involved in more fatal accidents than drivers over 35, teen drivers were involved at a rate of under 20 per 100,000.
Such has not always been the case. As late as about 2005, for instance, teen drivers were quite clearly the most likely to be involved in a fatal accident. The recent change is difficult to explain, although some have suggested that since fewer teens are driving in general, they are less likely to be involved in accidents. Young adults, on the other hand, are now in some sense the least experienced group of people on the road.
No matter what their exact age, younger, newer drivers in California, when they take to the streets, are assuming the responsibility to be careful and courteous to those on the road. If they do not do this, they could be held legally accountable for any car accidents they cause.