Graduated drivers licenses reduce teen fatalities

So says NIH news.

Programs that grant privileges to new drivers in phases — known as graduated licensing programs — dramatically reduce the rate of teen driver fatal crashes, according to three studies funded by the National Institutes of Health.

Such graduated licensing laws were adopted by all 50 states and the District of Columbia between 1996 and 2011. The NIH-supported research effort shows that such programs reduced the rate of fatal crashes among 16- 17-year-olds by 8 to 14 percent.

This one caught my eye because my second child is now taking drivers education (yikes!) and my oldest has her driving permit; North Carolina has a staged drivers license approach that is very different from when I got my license (one day no, then next day yes). It seems to have been a good change.

This NIH press release above refers to 3 NIH-funded studies, but doesn’t link directly to these studies that they are presumably trying to publicize (at least give the reference!). I will try and hunt down the references and link them after class.

Update: Some of these papers are not so easy to get. I am out of gas writing on these today, but will pick it up next week.

Abstract. James C. Fell. “An Evaluation of Graduated Driver Licensing Effects on Fatal Crash Involvements of Young Drivers in the United States”. Traffic injury prevention (1538-9588), 12 (5), p. 423.

Full Paper. Lio-Hui Chen et al. Graduated Driver Licensing Programs and Fatal Accidents among 16 Year olds. Pediatrics 2006;

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