teen car crash

Teen Death Rates Decline In States With Strong Graduated Driver License Laws

A 2006 study by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health that showed Graduated Driver License Laws (GDLs) reduced teen death rates by an average of 11% has been backed up by at least two states that have shown a significant decline in their teen fatality rate after enactment of tough new GDLs.

New Jersey’s strong GDL laws will become even stronger with new GDL regulations as a result of recommendations by the Teen Driver Study Commission. The new laws or regulations are:

  • No plea bargains for GDL holders (teens can’t plea bargain away points for traffic violations). Teens who accumulate 3 or more points, must attend a 4-hour MVC Probationary Driver Program and be monitored for 12 months. Any accumulation of points during the monitoring period will result in a 90 day license suspension.
  • Use of a decal on the vehicle to identify drivers who hold a learner’s permit or provisional license.
  • 11 PM curfew for all drivers under the age of 21 who hold a permit or provisional license.
  • Limit of passengers to just one – regardless of family affiliation.

The Illinois Secretary of State introduced figures that showed a 53% drop in teen deaths between 2007 and the first 9 months of 2009. Illinois sanctions on drivers during the Initial Licensing Phase include:

  • Two moving violation convictions occurring within a 24-month period will result in a minimum one-month driver’s license suspension. Suspension length is determined by the seriousness of the offenses and the driver’s prior driving history. An additional driver’s license suspension will result for each subsequent moving violation following the initial suspension.
  • Any moving violation conviction that occurs within the first year of licensure will result in a six-month extension of the passenger limitation, which allows no more than one unrelated passenger under age 20.
  • Suspended drivers are required to attend a remedial education course, may be retested and must pay a $70 reinstatement fee.

Parents who don’t live in a state with a strong GDL law, can impose their own strict restrictions. If you are not sure what the GDL law is in your state, visit your state’s web site or: http://www.iihs.org/iihs/topics/t/teenagers/qanda#teenagers–graduated-driver-licensing