Hoosiers: Raising the Driving Age (10-21-08)
In January, Indiana lawmakers are expected to consider legislation raising the minimum driving age in the Hoosier state to 16 ½ years and imposing other requirements for getting a license - including professional driver training. And that has my full support.
Several decades of driving statistics reveal two indisputable facts:
-- Young drivers are overrepresented in all crashes; and
-- Young males are overrepresented in all traffic deaths.
This doesn't mean all young drivers are dangerous. But it does prove inexperience plays a major role in a problem that kills over 41,000 Americans every year - about ten times the number we've lost in the Iraq War.
Many of us learned how to drive from mom or dad. But if parents are lousy drivers themselves, their bad habits will just be passed down to the next generation.
Actually, I'd support a law requiring drivers of all ages to take a refresher course in safe driving before being allowed to renew their licenses. Many would be shocked to learn how unprepared for the road they really are.
Anyone getting behind the wheel should be properly trained to handle what can easily become a two-ton deadly weapon. And if an extra six-month learning period for new drivers accomplishes that, I'm all for it.
What do you think? Call and let us know.
I'm Bill Lamb, and that's my...Point of View.