In the state of Georgia, teens do not get their full license immediately. Instead, drivers between the age of 15 and 18 participate in a graduated driver’s license program established by the Teenage & Adult Driver Responsibility Act (TADRA). TADRA was put into place as a result of a collective effort of lawmakers, educators, the media, businesses, and highway safety advocates after a number of high-profile tragic motor vehicle accidents that led to unfortunate deaths among young drivers.
Teen drivers do not have the experience or the maturity level to make smart and safe choices behind the wheel. Unfortunately, this means that young people face a significant risk of becoming injured in a motor vehicle accident. An Atlanta car accident lawyer can help victims of motor vehicle crashes to take legal action against those who are responsible for causing losses. When a teen driver causes a crash, victims of the accident can still file a lawsuit even though most teens have no personal assets to pay for losses, because teens must have motor vehicle insurance to pay for the damages they cause.
Graduated Driver’s Licensing Helps to Reduce Atlanta Car Crashes
TARDA involves a three-step education process that young people must go through before they are given the right to drive in Georgia.
- When a teen turns 15, the teenager becomes eligible for an instructional permit. The teen who drives with this permit must be accompanied by a licensed driver who is at least 21-years old.
- After a teen has had an instructional permit for 12 months and passed a driving test, the teen is eligible for a Class D Intermediate License. This license allows the teen to drive, but with restrictions. The teen is not allowed to drive between midnight and 5:00 AM, with no exceptions. During the first six months after the Class D license is issued, the teen cannot drive a car with any passengers who are not members of his immediate family. During the second six months, the teen cannot have passengers (other than family members) who are under 21. Finally, after the second six month period, the teen is not allowed to have more than three other non-family members who are less than 21.
Graduated licensing programs like the one in Georgia have made a substantial impact on reducing the number of young people who become involved in motor vehicle accidents. Nerd Wallet reports that the number of fatal crashes involving teens nationwide has fallen by more than half of the past decade. There were 5,724 teens aged 16 to 19 involved in fatal crashes in 2004 compared with just 2,568 teens in deadly accidents in 2013. Graduated licensing programs, specifically, have been credited with causing anywhere from a 10 to 30 percent average reduction in teen collision rates.
Parents and teens should be aware of the positive impact of graduated licensing rules and should be certain that all Georgia teens follow the restrictions imposed by TARDA as they move through the process of getting their full license to drive.
The Atlanta car accident lawyers at Sammons & Carpenter, P.C. can represent you after an injury caused by a teen driver. Call today at (404) 814-8949 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.