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Are college students risky drivers?

You may have heard people mention the risk from teen drivers. While there are certainly teens in college, most teen drivers are 16, 17 and 18-year-olds in high school. You may find yourself wondering if college students pose some of the same risks.

They often do. For one thing, they'll often drive even when they feel drowsy and are perhaps too tired to be behind the wheel. The National Sleep Foundation reported that young adults did this more than older drivers. Students may be tired not only from classes, but from hectic work schedules.

Alcohol also plays a role. When looking at fatal accidents, drivers from 21 years old to 24 years old had a blood alcohol concentration of at least 0.08 in 32 percent of the cases. That was the highest percentage found.

Finally, distracted driving is a huge issue with college students. Again looking at deadly crashes, a full 27 percent of those who were distracted while driving were between 20 years old and 29 years old. They could have been texting while driving, talking on the phone or doing anything else that kept them from thinking fully about driving.

This isn't to paint college students in a negative light as a group. There are many smart, safe drivers who go to colleges all across Illinois. However, the statistics do show that there are issues that impact how many risks these drivers will take, and they can put others in danger.

If you've been hit and injured by a college student who was drinking, texting or too tired to drive, you may be able to seek out financial compensation.

Source: BI Society, "Back to College Means Back to Accidents," Jacob Masters, accessed April 14, 2017

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