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Teens' memory linked to greater chance of an auto accident

Sharing the road with teens in Florida can be a worrisome experience. Because they are new to the roadway and do not have the honed skills to be as safe as someone who has driven for a longer period of time, they are prone to having auto accidents. Although there might be preconceived notions as to why this is the case, a new study indicates that teens could have a greater likelihood of being in a car crash because of a lack of development in their "working memory."

According to the University of Pennsylvania, there is slower growth in teens' working memory. That absence of development could be a key part of teens' propensity to have accidents. The working memory develops from the time a person is an adolescent and into their twenties. This is important for safe driving. For teens found with a slower development in this area, there was a greater chance of a car accident. Since driving safely requires keeping track of the environment and understanding various aspects of driving the vehicle, young people could face obstacles in being as safe as drivers with fully developed working memories.

In general, adolescents have a higher chance of being in a collision, being injured and killed. Some of that is due to the lack of experience and being unskilled. Most accidents occur in the first six months a person is driving. However, teens are in more accidents than new drivers who are older. Evidence links people with a lower capacity for memory to recklessness, not paying attention, accidents and testing poorly. After the researchers conducted various tests on different age groups, it was found that 17-year-olds had a greater chance of an accident than 20-year-olds. The frequency of accidents was not connected to the amount of time the person had been driving. The research might eventually allow for the identification of teens who are at higher risk of a crash.

After car accidents, people could suffer serious injuries, be hospitalized, face massive medical costs, lose time on the job or at home and face other problems. If the accident involved a teen, this can be an important point in pursuing compensation in a legal filing.

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