New Year, New Teen Driving Laws

A flurry of new driving and licensing laws may be triggering an epidemic of eye-rolling among teen drivers in several states. But lawmakers in New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere have passed these laws to prevent car accidents and address some of the safety concerns that come along with putting brand-new drivers on the road. Here are a few highlights of some of the new teen driving laws:

New Jersey. A bill recently passed by state lawmakers would require teen drivers in New Jersey to log up to an additional year of driving with their learner’s permit before they can be fully licensed. This law has been passed by lawmakers in New Jersey, so stay tuned on when it takes effect. More from CBS NY.

North Carolina. Teen drivers with learner’s permits will need to jump through a few more procedural hoops in North Carolina’s graduated licensing system for young drivers. This law took effect as of the first of this year. Learn more from the North Carolina DOT.

Pennsylvania. A new set of laws puts restrictions on drivers who are under 18, including limitations on the number of passengers who may ride with the driver, if those passengers are also under 18. Other new Pennsylvania laws on teen driving make the failure to wear a seatbelt a “primary offense” for drivers and passengers under 18 (meaning they can get pulled over for it), and bump up the number of supervised driving hours required for new drivers. These laws went into effect close to the end of 2011. More here.

These are just a few of the newest state laws that target teen drivers. For a state-by-state look at similar laws, check out Young Driver Licensing Systems in the U.S., from the IIHS.

For a unique view on the impact of teen driving laws like these, read this blog plost from the New York Times website: Teenage Driving Laws May Just Delay Deadly Crashes.