You may have heard that teenagers are the most dangerous drivers on the road. In some senses, the statistics do seem to support this. For instance, look at fatal accident rates. The highest rate comes from teen drivers, and the accident rate tends to drop as these drivers get older. Someone who is 16 is much more likely to cause a car accident than someone who is 21.
On occasion, this leads people to suggest that the driving age should be increased. What if it was set at 21? Wouldn’t that eliminate a lot of accidents caused by drivers who are apparently too young to be behind the wheel? It would certainly be inconvenient for young people who could no longer drive, but would it be safe?
The issue of experience
There is one major problem with this theory. In many of these accidents caused by young drivers, the real issue is a lack of experience. Because they haven’t been driving for very long, they will make mistakes. They learn lessons from these mistakes and get to be better drivers, leading to the decline in accidents as they grow older.
But moving the driving age up wouldn’t necessarily help. Someone would start driving later in life, but they would still be just as inexperienced. They need time to build up their experience, learn from their mistakes and develop safe driving practices. So it is unclear if changing the driving age would actually impact safety on the road in a meaningful way.
At the end of the day, there are always going to be risks posed by other drivers. If you have been injured in an accident that one of them caused, you may be able to seek compensation for medical bills and much more.