Why do so many teens continue to die in avoidable car accidents?
And, I’m really emphasizing the word avoidable here.
Last weekend, five South Orange County teens died in an accident and the sixth (the driver) is hospitalized with a head injury.
The five who died were burned beyond recognition.
The teens were returning from Knott’s Berry Farm at 2:15 in the morning.
The police say speed was a factor in the BMW’s accident.
So many people are now saying, “Don’t assign blame – just mourn the loss of the three boys and two girls.”
I say bullshit.
There are powerful lessons to be learned here.
I think it is a disservice to those who perished if people don’t LEARN from this tragedy.
I don’t know every detail of the circumstances, but let’s look at what has been published in newspapers the past few days:
• Drugs and/or alcohol were not factors in the accident.
• The car being driven was a BMW. (I would argue a BMW is a weapon in the hands of a teenage boy. There is no “good” reason to permit a teen to drive one.)
• The BMW belonged to a sixteen year old boy without a driver’s license. (It was registered to someone else, but the boy had bought it used from a relative.)
• The driver was not only unlicensed, but he didn’t even have his driver’s learning permit.
• The driver had been repeatedly told to “slow down” by people who had driven with him in the past … he had a habit of speeding.
• Which means he also had a habit of driving without a license.
• There were six people in a car that can only hold five.
• Young licensed drivers in California are not permitted to drive past 11:00 p.m.
• Young licensed drivers in California are not allowed to drive with other teens in the car.
• Seatbelts were NOT being worn when the car crashed.
• How many laws were broken here? I can’t even count them all.
• Five innocent passengers are dead.
• The unlicensed, speeding, driver is not.
• At the age of 16, the unlicensed, speeeding, driver is automatically sentenced to a life of guilt and shame.
The parents of the sixteen year old boy who was driving are refusing to talk.
Of course they are, they are about to be sued for every penny they own.
You cannot tell me they didn’t know their son was driving on a regular basis without a license.
I am outraged by the lack of parental supervision and the glaring neglect of parental responsibility.
I don’t know what the other parents knew or did not know.
How did they think there kids were getting to and from Knott’s Berry Farm?
Surely they all knew that by law their kids couldn’t ride home with a non-adult driver.
It’s possible the other parents were misled to think an adult would be bringing their child home –
I don’t know.
What I do know is this –
This tragic accident was preventable in a multitude of ways.
My heart absolutely breaks for the families who lost their kids.
What a horrible, avoidable, waste of life.