It turns out that this pattern may be biological. Researchers have found that circadian rhythms (or internal clocks) shift during adolescence. As a result teens are unable to go to sleep early and stay up later. Social pressures and homework can shift the sleep cycle even more. Unfortunately, school days start early.
Teens need about nine hours of sleep a night. If they don't get enough sleep, they incur a sleep debt. This increases their overall drowsiness, the ability to pay attention in class, and increases the risk of being involved in a Kansas City car crash.
Delaying school times may solve the problem of teen sleep deficit and decrease the risk of car crash injury. Studies in both Lexington, Kentucky and Virginia Beach, Virginia have looked at the effects of later school start times on teen accidents.
In Kentucky, the school day was delayed by one hour. Teen took a series of sleep surveys before and after the time change. Before the time change, only 35% of students averaged a full eight hours of sleep per night. After the time delay, more than 50% of the students got eight or more hours of sleep on school nights. School performance and GPA increased and there was a significant reduction in accident rates. During the study, the number of accidents in the state increased by 7.8 percent; in the school district with the delayed school day, accident rates fell by 16.5%.
The Virginia study compared accident rates in adjacent school districts with different start times. Virginia Beach students started their school day at 7:20 while Chesapeake students started at 8:40. Chesapeake had 46.2 crashes for every 1,000 teen drivers, compared to 65.4 per 1,000 teen drivers in Virginia Beach -- a 41 percent difference.
Car accidents are the leading cause of death for teens in Kansas City and nationwide. If teen deaths can be reduced with a later school time, then the Kansas City personal injury attorneys at Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys support this idea.
We hope you never have to experience the tragedy of a teen automobile accident. However, if your teen is ever injured in a Kansas City car crash, our Kansas City personal injury attorneys can help protect your child's rights and deal with the insurance companies on your behalf.
Have You Been Injured In A Kansas City Area Car Accident?
If you've been injured in a car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Kansas City office directly at 816.471.5111 to schedule your free consultation.