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Teen Driver Safety Program Credited with Reducing Traffic Deaths

Teen driver fatalities in Illinois are down sharply since 2007, and Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White credits the state’s Graduated Driver Licensing program that he championed in 2008 as a key factor.

There were 155 teen driving accident deaths in 2007 and 71 teen driving accident fatalities in 2013, according to Illinois Department of Transportation figures that White cited Oct. 20 for the kickoff of National Teen Driver Safety Week.

The legislation implemented stricter teen driver provisions:

*Extended the instruction permit phase from three months to nine months
*Reduced by an hour the nighttime driving window, cutting down the Sunday through Thursday restriction from 11 p.m. to 10 p.m. and trimming the Friday and Saturday restriction from midnight to 11 p.m., with exemption for work and school-related activities
*Not counting siblings, doubled from six months to 12 months the period during which a new driver may have a maximum of one teen passenger
*Permitted the ticketing of the passengers as well as the drivers ages 15 to 20 who violate the passenger restriction
*Required students to take at least six hours of on-the-street training from a certified driver education instructor
*Required new drivers to remain conviction-free in order to graduate to less restrictive licensing
*Established for drivers under 21 license suspension for each additional conviction following an initial suspension for two moving violations within a two-year period
*Required drivers under 18 to appear in court with a parent or guardian and to attend a traffic safety program in order to receive court supervision
*Implemented new penalties, such as license revocation and vehicle impoundment, for street racing
As the situation appears to be improving in Illinois, the national perspective is grim. Nationally, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for those ages 15 to 20, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

“Despite a declining trend, young drivers remain the largest percentage of crashes and deaths on our roads and we must all do more to change that,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said.

An analysis of teen driving accident figures shows that distracted driving is a culprit. For instance, a Johns Hopkins study found that the driver death rate for 16-year-old drivers rises for each additional passenger in the vehicle.

Illinois Car Accidents

Car accident attorneys deal with teens involved in traffic accidents daily, and they know all too well that the problem is not going away. Despite the best efforts, public policy alone cannot eliminate all teen traffic accidents. In the aftermath of these unfortunate events, the justice system plays a role in determining culpability and sanctioning whoever is at fault.

This is where an experienced car accident attorney can make a difference by presenting a strong case that protects the interest of the client. A teen motorist in Illinois is just as entitled to quality legal representation as any other driver. In Chicago, a teen involved in a motor vehicle accident can turn toIllinois car accidents lawyers for the experience and skill that they want on their side. And the consultation is free.

Chicago Car Accident Attorneys

If your teen has been involved in a car accident in Chicago or throughout Illinois, contact Levin & Perconti to schedule a free consultation.