Summer is deadliest season for teen drivers

- Before her summer vacation, Sickles High School student Lauren Slaybaugh is getting some hands-on driving experience.

Her peer evaluators critique her during driver's education.

"They correct you and they help you perform it better next time," Slaybaugh explained.

The extra set of eyes is helpful, but Lauren will eventually be responsible for watching her driving and the drivers around her.

"When you're driving you need to be aware of everything that's constantly happening around you," said Slaybaugh.

Distractions like cell phones are tempting and dangerous, as video from AAA demonstrates.

Especially during the stretch dubbed the 100 Deadliest Days, from Memorial Day until the start of the school year.

"They are going to have more free time to be driving, usually accompanied by their friends, which also adds to the dangers," explained Matt Nasworthy of AAA.

In addition to the number of teen wrecks going up during the summer months, the likelihood someone will die in one of these crashes goes up by 16 percent.

Statistics like these are why driver's education instructor Tammy Overcash takes her job so seriously.

"I don't think I can get in a car and drive from my home to school without seeing someone with a video on, doing makeup," said Slaybaugh's driver's ed instructor, Tammy Overcash.

She said kids are used to being preoccupied in the car, but phones are not allowed in her classroom.

"If I do find a cell phone in the car, they are finished driving for the day and they do have to pick [the phone] up after school in the main office," said Overcash.

Speeding is also a factor and, in some cases, teens aren't wearing seatbelts.

Nasworthy says parents have to be role models behind the wheel, "when it comes to speed, when it comes to distraction, when it comes to using your seatbelt."

Slaybaugh's parents give her guidance.

"I'm glad that they do because otherwise, I could be in some serious trouble," she said.

For more information on keeping teens safe on the roads, visit http://teendriving.aaa.com/FL/.

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