Teen Totals Mazda Miata Just Six Hours After Getting His Driver’s License

Too soon, Junior.

byChris Chin|
Mazda News photo

A teenage driver is lucky to be alive today after he reportedly totaled his first-generation “NA” Mazda Miata by wrapping it around a utility pole on Thursday in southern California. And while teenage-related car collisions aren't unusual, this one stands out because it happened mere hours after the teenager received his driver's license.

Local news affiliate KTLA reports the 18-year-old obtained that treasured beacon of freedom exactly six hours prior to the massive crash, which happened after he attempted to beat a yellow light. According to the report, the teen lost control of his new-to-him Miata and collided with another vehicle, the force of which ultimately flung the little roadster into the utility pole at the intersection of Harbor Boulevard and Hermosa Drive in Fullerton, CA at around 2:15 p.m. local time.

Fullerton Police uploaded a photo of the crash to their Instagram account, showing the completely ruined Miata and debris from the other vehicle. We must add, the teen is very lucky to not have been transporting a passenger that day.

Neither the teenager nor the other driver suffered any injuries, partially thanks to the fact that the teen was wearing his seat belt. However, judging by the condition of the car, we can imagine he'll be feeling this one for a while—with residual aches of whiplash usually appearing in the days following a crash.

“As you can see from the photos, the driver was incredibly lucky. He walked away from this collision without injury for one reason and one reason only: he was wearing his seatbelt. Seatbelts save lives,” wrote the Fullerton PD on its Instagram post.

Car crashes are statistically the leading cause of death for teenagers in America, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Teens are also three times more likely to be involved in an accident than someone with considerably more experience.