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Car accidents more common for younger drivers who have ADHD

In Florida and across the U.S., it is widely known that younger drivers generally lack the experience and knowledge to avoid accidents and circumstances that an older, more experienced driver might avoid. However, anecdotal evidence will never surpass statistical studies as to the risk that younger drivers present. One study from JAMA Pediatrics examined the frequency with which young drivers who have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are in a crash. It showed that those with ADHD are 36 percent more likely to be in a crash compared with other adolescents behind the wheel.

In the past, research found that those with ADHD had a higher frequency of car accidents. In 1993, for example, it was found that adolescents with ADHD were four times were likely to have a crash. The authors of the new study say that the earlier information was subjected to limitations. Included in that context are smaller samples from specialty medical centers and self-reporting accidents. This new study used 18,500 electronic health records with 2,500 who were diagnosed as having ADHD.

The author of the study says that the dangers inherent in those who are young drivers and have ADHD can be managed. Since ADHD inhibits impulse control, causes hyperactivity and an inability to pay attention, it can lead to various driving impairments that can be comparable to driving under the influence. Their issues can lead to becoming distracted by various outlets such as using their phone or simply eating and changing the radio station. It was also found that drivers with ADHD often wait to get their driver's licenses and get it when they are older.

Drivers who are in a crash could suffer injuries and fatalities that can have life-changing effects. There might be major costs for treatment, long-term care and the inability to return to work. With a fatality, the family left behind will need to learn to get by without their loved one. Filing a legal case can help with these matters and understanding that the other driver might have been hindered by an issue such as ADHD could be part of the case as evidence of responsibility. Discussing a case with a legal professional experienced in personal injury can provide information on how to move forward.

Source:, "Young drivers with ADHD 36% more likely to have an accident, study says," Daniella Emanuel, June 12, 2017

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