In our last post, we reported the events of the automobile accident on Memorial Day that claimed the lives of 5 Irvine teenagers. We also urged parents to take a more active role in their teenagers’ lives, particularly when it comes to driving – the #1 killer of teens in America.
As more information surrounding the accident becomes available, we have learned that the driver, 17-year-old Abdulrahman M. Alyahyan, did not have a driver’s license or learner’s permit.
Obviously you cannot legally drive without a license or permit, but teenage drivers have even more restrictions. In California, teenage drivers under 18 are prohibited from carrying passengers under 20 for the first year they have their license and may not drive between the hours of 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. without a parent or guardian.
Alyahyan had also previously been cited by Irvine police for making an illegal modification to his 2008 Infiniti’s exhaust system and having tinted windows that obstruct the driver’s view.
As stated in our previous post, the part of a teenager’s brain that controls reasoning and helps them “think before they act” is not fully developed until well into adulthood. Teenagers are more likely to:
- act on impulse
- get into accidents of all kinds
- engage in dangerous or risky behavior
Now, that is not to say that teenagers should be excused for every poor decision they make; there aren’t unlimited free passes in life. And it is also not to say that teenagers are incapable of making good decisions. But parents, educators, policy makers, and other influential adults need to be aware of the differences between adults and teenagers so we can be involved in their lives in positive ways.
By playing an active part in your teenager’s driver’s education, you can effectively “save them from themselves” and prevent at best, traffic school and costly car repairs, and at worst, devastating injuries or even death from occurring.