In 2008, the Teen Safe Driving Task Force was created in response to an increase in fatal accidents involving teenage drivers on Connecticut roadways.
In effort to reduce the number of highway fatalities claiming the lives of teenagers far too soon, several laws were implemented, including a graduated licensing (GDL) program.
The program is based on the belief that it takes time for teenagers to learn how to drive safely; therefore, the programs require teenagers to obtain their driver’s licenses by completing a series of stages.
In Connecticut, teens first must complete driver’s training after receiving a learner’s permit and before earning a driver’s license. A teenager is not eligible for a learner’s permit until reaching the age of 16, and is not eligible for a full license (after completing the permit period) until the age of 18.
Other laws that were adopted in 2008 regarding teenage drivers involved making curfew times earlier for teenage drivers, imposing restrictions on cellphone usage, increasing fines for certain moving violations and increased suspensions for reckless drivers.
In a past article on our website, we wrote about the law changes and whether or not they had been successful at improving safety among teenage drivers.
We reported that in 2009, the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles released a preliminary review indicating that teenagers were receiving far fewer driving-related convictions since they laws were put in place, including 43 percent fewer speeding violations.
Car accidents continue to be one of the main causes of death among teenagers in the United States, but it is evident that laws like the ones that went into effect in Connecticut in 2008 are making the roads safer for teenage drivers and everyone else.