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Joe Holleman is a reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

I-44 wreck

Emergency crews clear an accident involving a tractor trailer on east bound interstate 44 near jaimeson during a thunderstorm on Tuesday April 7, 2015 in St. Louis. Photo by Huy Mach, hmach@post-dispatch.com

When it comes to lists, Missouri quite often ends up in the middle of the pack. Not good, not bad, just mediocre.

But here is one area in which we perform remarkably bad: teen driving.

The Show-Me sector skidded in at No. 48 on the "Best and Worst States For Teen Drivers," from personal-finance website Wallethub.

Basically, the list portrays our state as being dangerous and permissive for teen drivers, but at least it doesn't cost much.

Missouri finished at No. 48 in two of the list's three main categories:

"Safety," which looked at things such as fatalities, drinking and driving, phone use while driving and quality of roads; and "driving laws," which took into account laws concerning impaired or distracted driving, and leniency toward DUI violations.

In the third category, "financial," we were No. 16. That category weighed factors such as cost of traffic tickets, insurance costs, car-repair costs and gas prices.

No surprise that all of our bordering states finished higher, with Illinois cracking into the top 10 with a No. 9 finish.

The best state for teen drivers was Maryland; and the only two states to finish lower than Missouri were South Dakota and Wyoming.

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