November 30, 2023

HARRISBURG, Pa. -– On Monday, in observance of Teen Driver Security Week, the Shapiro administration shared security messages and useful info with younger drivers at excessive faculties throughout the Commonwealth. The discussion board was held at Cedar Cliff Excessive Faculty and featured a panel of representatives from the Pennsylvania Division of Transportation (PennDOT), Pennsylvania State Police, Pennsylvania Division of Training, Pennsylvania Insurance coverage Division (PID) and native security advocates fielded questions from college students on matters starting from insurance policies and procedures to security info that straight impacts teen drivers in Pennsylvania.

“All of us have a component in making highways safer, and all of us must work collectively to assist new drivers acquire useful expertise and data,” stated PennDOT Secretary Mike Carroll. “Dad and mom and academics are an integral a part of establishing a mentality of security behind the wheel amongst teen drivers.” 

Motorized vehicle crashes are a number one reason behind dying amongst teenagers. From 2018 to 2022, there have been 79,684 crashes involving no less than one 16- to 19-year- outdated driver in Pennsylvania, leading to 458 fatalities. 65 % of these crashes concerned a teen driver driving too quick for situations (24,695 crashes), driver inexperience (8,296), driver distraction (11,638) or improper/careless turning (13,109). There was a complete of 51,949 crashes with a number of of those teen driver components. 

The chance of a crash involving any of those components could be diminished via observe, limiting the variety of passengers driving with a teen driver, obeying all guidelines of the street, and utilizing widespread sense. 

“An necessary think about making certain {that a} younger driver develops good habits behind the wheel is parental involvement, beginning lengthy earlier than their teen will get a learner’s allow,” stated Colonel Christopher Paris, Pennsylvania State Police Commissioner. “All of us can affect constructive behaviors amongst teen drivers via our personal actions by eliminating distractions and obeying all site visitors legal guidelines, together with seatbelt use.” 

Dad and mom ought to contemplate the next options to assist their youngsters grow to be protected and accountable drivers:

1. Have common conversations along with your teen about protected driving expertise, even earlier than they get their learner’s allow. 

2. Set up a guardian/teen driving contract.

3. Strongly encourage your teen to keep away from distractions behind the wheel, equivalent to speaking or texting on their cellphone. 

4. Restrict the variety of passengers your teen could have of their car. Drivers beneath 18 could not carry a couple of passenger beneath the age of 18 who isn’t a direct member of the family until one guardian or guardian is within the car. After the primary six months of incident-free driving on a junior license, the restrict is elevated to not more than three passengers beneath the age of 18 who usually are not quick members of the family until one guardian or guardian is within the car.

5. Restrict daybreak, nightfall, and nighttime driving till your teen positive aspects extra expertise and implement a curfew. Bear in mind, state regulation prohibits 16- and 17-year-olds with a junior license from driving between 11:00 p.m and 5:00 a.m.

6. Steadily enhance the period of time/distance your teen is allowed to drive.

7. Implement observance of velocity limits and different guidelines of the street.

8. Trip along with your teen often after they obtain their license to watch driving expertise.

9. Set a superb instance with your individual driving habits.

“Driving is a extremely complicated ability that requires years of observe to good,” stated Division of Training Secretary Dr. Khalid N. Mumin. “Driver schooling coaching applications are invaluable in instructing novice drivers, particularly youngsters, the vital expertise they should efficiently and safely navigate on the roads.”

 Driver teaching programs additionally provide an prolonged profit to younger drivers. The Pennsylvania Insurance coverage Division reminds younger drivers that along with procuring round, there are methods that they’ll proactively preserve their charges decrease, equivalent to making the most of low cost alternatives with taking driver’s ed courses and sustaining good grades. Teenagers who give attention to making good choices behind the wheel, equivalent to at all times sporting a seatbelt, eliminating distractions, and placing telephones away whereas driving, are likely to keep away from accidents and driving violations, that are key to preserving charges low.

“Auto insurance coverage is a crucial monetary safety for college kids and their households. Whereas many highschool college students are excited to get their driver’s license, insurance coverage charges for younger drivers are excessive, as a result of younger, inexperienced drivers have a better probability of submitting insurance coverage claims,” stated Pennsylvania Insurance coverage Commissioner Michael Humphreys. “As new drivers develop good driving habits, it’s also crucial that they perceive the significance of remaining insured and the position of auto insurance coverage, together with the coverages they purchase.”

For extra info on teen driver security, go to PennDOT’s web site at: