Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Changes Affecting Teenage Drivers in PA

The Pennsylvania House of Representatives recently passed a bill that would result in changes to how Pennsylvania teenagers use their learning permits and would increase the requirements to receive a junior license. Currently, a PA driving permit requires 50 practice hours; this bill increased that number to 65 hours, with 10 hours of nighttime driving and 5 hours of driving in inclement weather. In addition to an increase in driving hours, this bill would also make not wearing your seatbelt a primary offense. This means that junior drivers can be pulled over for not wearing their seatbelt, even if no other offense has occurred (such as running a red light, speeding, or running a stop sign). This is also likely helping to promote Pennsylvania’s “Click it or Ticket” campaign, encouraging drivers to wear their seatbelts on the road or face additional fines if pulled over for another offense while not wearing their seatbelt. This bill has passed and will now move on to the state senate for consideration.
Inexperienced driving is a major component in many motor vehicle accidents. Teenage drivers are arguably the most likely group to cause a car accident, due to a lack of experience, a tendency to talk on their cell phones and text while driving, and distractibility by other friends in their vehicle. Our law office hopes that the additional practice hours for permit holders will lead to a decrease in accidents and will result in more responsible and experienced teenage drivers.
If you feel that you have been wrongly hurt in a motor vehicle accident, please contact our office for a consultation at no cost to you. We will be happy to review your claim.

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