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One of the hallmarks of being a teenager is getting to ride with friends when you have friends who are able to get a driver’s license. Many teens think of this as a right of passage, but they might not realize that remaining safe is imperative when they are riding with friends.

A recent news story about the death of a 17-year-old boy in Kearney might serve as a good reminder for parents and teens in the area. The fatal accident occurred when a group of teens was traveling on 92-Highway. One of the front tires of the vehicle came off, which caused the car to careen into a mailbox and travel down an embankment.

The teen who died was in the back seat, buckled into the middle seat. Troopers remarked that he was in the safest seat possible, but that didn’t matter in this case.

In this case, the teen driver was driving in a safe manner. He wasn’t thought to have been speeding, drinking or doing anything reckless. This is one thing that makes this case so troublesome. The teen driver couldn’t have known that the tire was going to come off.

When a tragedy like this occurs, parents are likely going to question the suitability of letting their teens out with friends. For a parent to learn that their child died tragically is one of the worst things that they can ever deal with. Ultimately, fatal accidents that involve a car component failing might lead to a wrongful death lawsuit that might include the manufacturer of the defective part as a defendant.

Source:, “Parents of Kearney teen killed in crash recall ‘surreal’ moment they learned their son was gone,” Melissa Stern, Aug. 14, 2017