28 people died on Michigan roadways since last week making a total of 765 this year. In addition, 112 more were seriously injured for a statewide total of 4,443 to date. Compared to last year at this time there are 40 fewer fatalities and 7 more serious injuries.

The Michigan State Police Office of Highway Traffic Safety Planning is reminding us that this week is designated as National Teen Driver Safety week.

Vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for 15-18 year olds in the country. That’s ahead of all other types of injury, disease, or violence. In Michigan, licensed drivers age 15-20 represented 6.6 percent of the drivers in fatal crashes last year. And nearly 10 thousand teens and young adults were injured in traffic crashes, representing almost 13 percent of all those injured in crashes.

The State Police are reminding parents and guardians to considering enforcing the basic plan of allowing teens no keys until they know the rules. Those key rules surround cell phone use, speed, drowsy driving, buckling up, alcohol, and passengers. A 16- or 17- year old driver’s risk of being killed in a crash increases 44 percent when carrying one passenger under the age of 21. It doubles when carrying two passengers younger than 21. And quadruples when carrying three passengers younger than 21.