Study: Teen driving deaths at all-time high

Published: Nov. 4, 2016 at 8:49 AM MST|Updated: Mar. 2, 2018 at 4:19 PM MST
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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Teen driving deaths are at an all-time high.

According to a new study from AAA, car crashes are the No. 1 killer of young people.

More than 5,000 teens are involved in fatal car crashes each year and an additional 196,000 are hurt.

"With car crashes already being the No. 1 killer of teens, it only makes sense to strengthen our state's GDL laws to promote safer driving habits," said Valerie Vinyard, spokeswoman for AAA Arizona. "Today's teens are living in the age of connectedness, which can make it even more dangerous when they take on the responsibility of learning to drive."

AAA asked more than 140 driving instructors to find the top three mistakes teens make behind the wheel.

Teachers say speeding tops the list.

Distractions, like texting while driving, come in second.

And finally, they're just not aware of their surroundings.

Arizona is one of two states that do not have a texting while driving law.

Back in July, Pima County started ticketing drivers for being distracted behind the wheel.

During the first month, deputies only handed out a handful of tickets.

[READ: Texting and driving ban officially begins in Pima County]

On Saturday, Nov. 5, Tire Rack Street Survival, a nonprofit, is holding a Street Survival Teen Driving School at Marana Regional Airport.

It starts at 8:30 a.m. and goes until 3:30 p.m.

The workshop costs $75. Students need to have a valid Learner's Permit and bring their own car.

Instructors will teach teens how to handle an out-of-control car and what to do in an emergency.

It is a 3-hour classroom lesson followed by hands-on instruction in the car.

Spots are limited. If you'd like to sign up, go to or call Kris at (520) 850-9326.

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