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TEEN Driving Laws are Working

By Jackie Burrell
Friday, February 27th, 2009 at 10:48 am in Teens.

Calm drivers ILLUS.jpgYou know those graduated drivers license laws teens gripe about so much? The ones that don’t allow new drivers, ages 16-18, to drive between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. or have teenage passengers in the car for the first 12 months, unless there’s a licensed driver over 25 present? A new AAA study says those laws are having tremendous impact. Death rates for 16-year-old drivers dropped by 38% in states with those types of laws, and the effect is probably even more profound for other people. That’s because the majority of deaths in traffic accidents involving 15- to 17-year-old drivers weren’t teen drivers. Some 63% of the people killed in those accidents were passengers, occupants of other vehicles, bicyclists and pedestrians.

Got tips to share on how to cultivate safe teen drivers? Click comments!

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No Responses to “TEEN Driving Laws are Working”

  1. Carrie Says:

    I would be interested in a link to the AAA study if that’s online. This post touches on something else that’s been in the news recently, that teen’s brains aren’t fully developed and this causes certain behavior that can negatively affect choices teens make while driving.

    Thanks for bringing attention to an issue that isn’t dicussed enough. We need more laws to protect children from themselves.

  2. Newbury Driving Instructor Says:

    Any laws that can decrease the high number of deaths among young and inexperienced drivers can only be a good thing. More classroom training would help too. Explaining about the dangers that they face on todays busy roads

  3. Jackie Burrell Says:

    Hi, Carrie — Here’s a link to the news release with all the statistics on both the percentage of non-teens killed in teen driving accidents and the impact of graduated drivers license laws:

    I’m hoping that link takes you there directly — I got bogged down by the AAA portal, where you have to put in your zip code and go to a home page and and and! If you need me to cut and paste it here, I can do that, but try the link first! And yes, there’s a definite link with teen brain development and impulsivity. You’re absolutely right.

  4. Shannon Says:

    Driving involves a lot of decision making. I think it’s not so much carelessness but rather impulsive decision making on the part of teens which cause accidents. I think awareness and discipline would really help cut down on the accidents.

  5. Jackie Burrell Says:

    I absolutely agree!

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