Senator Fuschillo: Stronger Teen Driving Training Requirements Take Effect Today

Charles J. Fuschillo Jr.

February 22, 2010

Law Will Help Better Prepare Teenagers for Challenges of Driving 

          Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (R-Merrick) announced today that stronger teen driving training requirements are now in effect.  

            “Driving, like any skill, requires training and practice in order to learn. Inexperience behind the wheel makes teen drivers much more vulnerable to car crashes. Ensuring that teens are better prepared to handle the challenges and responsibilities of driving a car will save lives and prevent crashes on our roads,” said Senator Fuschillo, who supported the law in the Senate. 

            As part of the new teen driving requirements taking effect today: 

            * Teens must have 50 hours of supervised driving training before they are eligible to take a road test. 15 of those hours must be after sunset, so that teens can learn how to drive at night. Completion of the 50 hour requirement would have to be certified by the teen’s parent or guardian. Previously, teens only needed 20 hours of supervised driving with no requirements for night driver training. 

            * Teens must hold their learner’s permit for at least six months before they can schedule a road test for a junior driver’s license. Limited junior driver licenses, which were available to teens who passed a road test but had their permit for less than six months, have been eliminated. 

            * Teens with a junior driver’s license can only have one non-family passenger under the age of 21 in the car if no adult is present. Prior law allowed 2 such passengers. 

            The law applies to teens who receive their learner’s permit as of today and in the future. 

            Statistics show that teen drivers are particularly vulnerable to fatal car crashes. According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for teenagers. Teens are involved in three times as many fatal crashes as all other drivers.