Teen crashes in NJ down since law change

May 20, 2011 3:20:58 PM PDT
The number of fatal motor vehicle accidents involving teenagers is down 42 percent since New Jersey's Graduated Driver's License began ten years ago.

Even if one teen's life was saved over the last 10 years, the law would be a success.

But when state officials say teen motor vehicle fatalities are down 42 percent, "That is clearly significant. Many lives have been saved," said David Hughes with AAA Clubs of New Jersey.

Hughes says the organization was a driving force behind the law passed back in 2001.

The law restricts when teens can drive, limits the number of passengers, and restricts the use of electronic devices.

Young drivers also must display a red decal on the license plate to make it easier for police to enforce the law.

So out of all the rules and regulations, the one teens tell us they pay the least attention to is the decal on the plate.

Jamie Kempin is a senior at Wayne Valley High School. She and her friends know the law well, but surprisingly enough, think other factors have more to do with the decrease in teen fatalities on the road.

"Kids know a lot more now than we used to. We know how to be safe, it's drilled into our heads," she said.

Whatever the case, better education and more responsible teens, a law that lays out very clear rules and you can't argue with the numbers.

Less teen deaths on the road is of course a good thing, especially with prom season upon us.

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