Spring break is in full swing. Across the nation, a new crop of young drivers is out on the road, some making their first annual trek to sunnier climes. Some will be involved in their first car crash. Some won’t make it home.
In 2013, teenagers were killed in 9 percent of motor vehicle fatalities. Moving up in age, young adults (between 21 and 24 years) account for the highest percentage of accidents involving drunk driving (BAC over .08%, Census data, 2009). Youth, inexperience on the road, and a willingness to take chances are all thought to be contributing factors.
Thankfully, the numbers have been falling – partly due to increased enforcement of DUI laws, and because of safer automobile designs. But with each new crop of drivers, the same lessons have to be learned. We can’t rest on our laurels. And at the Appel Law Firm LLP, we want to continue our efforts to raise awareness about automobile safety, by once again offering our Survivor Scholarship.
The $1,000 scholarship is open to US residents who will be attending an accredited university this fall, and who have been personally affected by a motor vehicle accident. Applicants may have been in a serious crash themselves, or had a family member injured or killed in an accident. We only ask to hear their story – how the accident changed their lives and how they managed to move forward. A short narrative essay is required, and we ask for supporting documentation (a police report) to verify the account.
Thomas Appel explains the Survivors Scholarship this way:
“As an attorney specializing in injury lawsuits, my job is to obtain fair monetary compensation for my clients. But no amount of money can completely restore a life twisted up by tragedy. The mental and emotional scars can linger long after a settlement check is cashed. I truly admire those who survive and go on to accomplish their goals despite the setback. This money is meant to recognize their efforts and provide some tangible financial support.”
The scholarship is also intended to raise awareness of automobile accidents. We want to reach those currently in, or about to attend college or law school. Young people need to know they are the most vulnerable. And as each group of new drivers gets out on the road, the message needs to be repeated: The only “good” crash is the one you avoid altogether.
By not limiting scholarship applicants to California, we want to reach as many students as possible. Please feel free to share a link to this page with anyone you feel might benefit.
We also have links to specific driving safety topics and the legal aspects of collisions here.