Teen Drivers Could be Driving Alone Soon

By Mitch Domin and Cheyenne Weber –

Student: “Can you take my friend and I to school?”

New driver: “Nah, I just got my license, can’t take you it’s against the law, maybe in six months.”

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett intends to make this scenario happen.

Corbett is expected to soon sign into law a bill that increases mandatory  driving experience needed during the learner’s permit phase,  prohibits new drivers from transporting more than one person under the age of 18 and requires every young driver to wear a seatbelt. For the first six months teen drivers can carry one person under the age of 18, under the provision.  If the teen does not get in a accident in the six month time period, he or she will be limited to three people in the car at a time.

“I feel like it would make us safer if everyone actually followed it, but I can’t see that happening,” said senior Alec Keck.

But it’s the younger drivers who do not support the new law.

New drivers may soon have more restrictions on them in Pa. File photo

“It’s not fair, why do we have to wait,” complained freshman Mark Conrad.

“My main goal is to reduce teen driving fatalities,” said state Rep. Katharine Watson, the prime sponsor of the bill.

“It’s a hassle,” said Penn Manor senior Evan Bigler.  “People will do it (drive with more than one friend) anyway.”

This bill’s specific perks are. if a driver or passenger under the age of 18 is not following the safety actions – namely not wearing a seat belt, it will be a primary offense and police could pull the driver over. The learner’s permit requirement went from 50 hours of driving to 65 hours of driving. The bill also says the permit driver must have at least five hours of driving in bad weather and 10 hours of driving at night.

“People drive drunk, people drive without a seat bell and people drive with to many people in the car nothings going to change because of some bill,” said Nick Fonzi.