Distracted Driving Tops the List for At-Fault Young Driver Car Crashes

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(COLORADO) – When a young or new driver hits the road, they encounter the same risky and challenging driving scenarios that you do. That is why the Colorado State Patrol is encouraging parents and young drivers to drop the distractions while behind the wheel.

In fact, when looking at crashes investigated by the Colorado State Patrol, distracted driving was the top causal factor for “at fault” crashes of drivers between the ages of 16-21 years old in both 2019 and 2020 for our state. It’s important to remember that teens and new drivers are continuing the learning process during their first few years on the road.

“We see the devastating impacts of inexperience and distraction every day,” stated Captain Joy Grissom, Colorado State Patrol. “We need parents to be good role models for our young drivers and keep your eyes on the road every single time you drive. The text, sip of coffee, or adjustment to your seat can wait until you’re safely parked.” 

During the month of October, in honor of National Teen Driver Safety Week, the Colorado State Patrol is using their social media channels to message teens about this important topic with a campaign #ItCanWait.

We are now asking for the help of our parents to approach this topic with your young driver, enforce the Graduated Driver Licensing Law (GDL), model good behavior, and schedule regular driving practice with your teen, even after they are licensed to drive.

Any distraction is a dangerous distraction. Anything that takes a driver’s eyes off the road could cost a life. Since 2012, the number of at-fault distracted driver crashes has increased every year. This is a trend we can change by educating teen drivers and practicing good driving habits as parents, caregivers, friends, and neighbors. Put down the cell phone, hold the snack for later, and pay attention to the road – It can wait.  

Distracted Driving - Put Phone Down


Since our origin in 1935, the Colorado State Patrol (CSP) has focused on preserving human life and protecting property within our communities. Our 1,100 members embody the core values of Honor, Duty, and Respect in their daily jobs.  In addition to our expertise in motor vehicle safety on the state’s roadways, the CSP is responsible for the Governor and other dignitaries’ protection, commercial motor vehicle enforcement, hazardous materials, homeland security, communications, investigative services, criminal interdiction, community education, aviation operations, and more. For additional information, visit us online at Colorado State Patrol or follow us on TwitterInstagram, YouTube, or Facebook.