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July 14, 2009 / Mark Kerrigan

People Age 15-24 Much More Likely to Have Head Injury as Result of MVA


tbibyageDoing a bit of research on traumatic brain injuries (TBI), I found this report to Congress from 15 years ago. While the numbers and percentages may have changed, I doubt that the major causes of TBI remains the same. What struck me was that the major causes of TBIs of people ages 15-24 was transportation-related crashes! (I guess I had always suspected that, but seeing it in front of me in a Congressional Report made it all that much more true.)

“Transportation-related crashes (involving motor vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, and recreational vehicles) accounted for 49 percent of all TBIs; falls accounted for an additional 26 percent. Firearm-use accounted for 10 percent of all TBIs in the seven States, and assaults not involving firearms accounted for 8 percent of reported injuries. Nearly two-thirds of firearm-related TBIs (66.5 percent) were classified as suicidal in intent.”

figure8The rental car companies and the insurance companies know this fact probably as well as anyone. That’s why for a person to drive a rental car legally, he must be at least 21 (according to Enterprise Rent-A-Car, but Enterprise does tack on an additional fee of $10 per day of the rental. After the renter is 25 or older, that fee is removed.).

Most insurance companies use a “rating factor” which provides a reduction in rate at the age of 25.

Progressive Insurance representative Dave said that age is a factor in determining the rate for the insured.

“All other things being equal,” Dave said, “the younger driver is generally more expensive than an older one.” However, he did point out that at Progressive Insurance they take into account a number of other factors besides age.

In Conclusion

The people who are ages 15 to 24 have the second highest rate of TBI in the nation. The only age-group with a higher incidence of TBI is the people over 75, which is understandable because with falls and strokes, etc., it’s (sadly) to be expected. Therefore, many states are making the age to get a driver’s license higher and with more restrictions.

When I got my license, I was turned loose by the state—free to drive at any time and anywhere I choose. Now in Tennessee, I think the latest a minor (younger than 18) can legally operate a motor vehicle is 11:00 pm.

Though my accident occurred between 7 and 7:30 pm, I felt as though I had been licensed to carry a deadly weapon. I was 16 and thought I was invincible. Little did I know what a painful lesson I had to learn.

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One Comment

Leave a Comment
  1. crersaicy / Jul 25 2009 4:45 am

    uhm. i dont think so…

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