Maryland Car Accident Fatalities Reduced By Laws Placing Limits On Licensed Minors, According To AAA Report

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety has released a report saying that restrictions imposed on teen drivers by the state of Maryland may be working. According to the report, measures known as “graduated driver licensing” can reduce car accident fatalities involving young drivers by 20%.

Limits for licensed minor drivers in the state of Maryland include:

*Not being able to carry passengers younger than 18 years of age when driving unaccompanied by a qualified supervising driver during the first 5 months of being licensed.

*Not being allowed to use cell phones while driving except to call 911.

*No driving between midnight and 5 a.m. unless accompanied by a parent or guardian or driving for work.

*Licensed minor drivers must have a provisional license for 18 months without incurring any moving violations to secure a regular license.

*Making the license provisional until the driver turns 18 years of age.

*Increasing the minimum period for holding a learner’s permit from three to six months.

*Raising the age for being able to obtain a license to 16 years and 3 months.

Maryland instituted the night driving restrictions in 1999 and imposed the other limits last year.

The AAA Foundation also released the following statistics:

*From 1995-2004, almost 400 people died in car accidents involving teen drivers.
*30% of fatalities involving licensed minor drivers take place between 9pm – 6am.

*1000 drivers, 16-17 year of age, are killed in the US every year.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention says that two out of five deaths involving teens result from car accidents.

More statistics from the CDC:

*In 2002, more than 5,000 teens (ages 16 to 19) died of injuries caused by motor vehicle crashes.
*The risk of motor vehicle crashes is higher among 16 to 19-year-olds than any other age group. In fact, per mile driven, teen drivers are four times more likely than older drivers to get in an auto accident.
*In 2003, teenagers accounted for 10 percent of the U.S. population and 13 percent of motor vehicle crash deaths.

*The presence of teen passengers increases the crash risk of unsupervised teen drivers; the risk increases with the number of teen passengers in a car.

Limits on Teen Driving Bolstered,, June 22, 2006
Study: Tougher Driving Rules For Minors Decrease Fatalities,, June 23, 2006
Related Web Resources:

Traffic Injury Research Foundation

Reducing the Crash Risk for Young Drivers, AAA Foundation (PDF)

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