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Study: North Dakota is terrible for teen drivers

The summer is often when many teenagers, now free of the struggles of balancing school and leisure, will obtain their driver’s licenses. Unfortunately, it is also often regarded as the deadliest time to be out on the road. Currently, in the United States, eight teens die as a result of motor vehicle injuries every day — making accidents the leading cause of death for those between the ages of 16 and 19. And as a new study unfortunately shows, North Dakota is one of the states that poses the biggest threat to these new drivers.

As a way to help parents ensure their children are safe on the road, experts at WalletHub set out to determine which states were the deadliest for teenage drivers. To do so, the organization took the average data regarding teens behind the wheel in each state, and divided them into three key dimensions: Safety, Driving Laws, and the state’s Economic Environment. These dimensions were then split into 23 separate metrics, which were then weighed and graded on a 100-point scale (with higher numbers representing more favorable conditions). When all of these metrics were compared, it was determined that North Dakota can be a terrifying place for those just starting to learn the rules of the road.

Although ND’s general economic environment hovers slightly above the national average, its scores in both safety and the number of laws available to protect drivers are abysmal when compared to those of other states.

North Dakota’s overall results also reported a large number of statistics that were either around or far below the national average. Below is a list of some of the most notable of these numbers.

  • Teen Driver Fatalities per 100,000 Teens: 12th highest in the US
  • Teen DUIs per 100,000 Teens: 4th highest in the US
  • Vehicle Miles Traveled Per Capita: 8th highest in the US
  • Presence of Occupant-Protection Laws: 28th highest in the US
  • Presence of Impaired Driving Laws: 25th highest in the US

These disturbing statistics form a trend that appears to extend throughout most of the Midwest: South Dakota, Ohio, Montana, and Missouri are also ranked among the ten most dangerous states in the United States for teenage drivers. In contrast, many states on the East or West coasts generally reported higher scores.

RankStateSafety RankingEconomic Environment RankingDriving Law RankingTotal Score
2New York125566.47
3New Jersey217964.66
6West Virginia2426260.31

In order to view the full study — including detailed statistics and rankings for each state in the US — visit this page on Wallethub’s website.

Source: KX Net