New Jersey Teenagers and Driving

steering_wheel.jpg The facts speak for themselves: needless loss of life, untold injuries, and billions of dollars in insurance payments. Teenagers and driving are a potent mix; according to this representative study, the very limited behind-the-wheel instruction time needed to secure a driver’s license presents a grave danger to anyone who rides the roads, and another report reinforces the supposition that parental management at the earliest stages of driving has beneficial effects. The New Jersey Teen Driver Study Commission has just recently issued its report with many recommendations. Among them are: increase the permit phase from six months to one year; require a certain number of hours of professional driving instruction during the permit phase; scale back the driving curfew from midnight to 11PM; and require parents to attend orientation classes with their children. These and other proactive measures will hopefully drive down the horrendous statistics that our children face when they get behind the wheel. And as NJCU’s Health Department offers Driver Education Certification, it behooves all of us here to be aware of this problem and what can be done about it. To paraphrase a New York Times editorial, we all want our children home safely.

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