Response to request from the NC Child Fatality Task Force Executive committee regarding the NC young driver licensing system and changes proposed in SB 69
Author(s): Highway Safety Research Center,
Collection title: Highway Safety Policy Brief
Publication Date: Feb-2021
Address: Chapel Hill, NC
Abstract: North Carolina’s young driver licensing system, usually referred to as Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL), was enacted in 1997 with overwhelming support of the general public and legislators in both the House and Senate. North Carolina led the nation in embracing this scientifically-based approach to reducing deaths and injuries in teen motor vehicle crashes. Because of its success, all but two states have now adopted GDL. Legislators adopted this modern approach to teen driver licensing in view of the facts that (1) motor vehicle crashes were the leading cause of death among teenagers, and (2) 25% of NC teen drivers crashed in their first year of driving. Researchers at the UNC Highway Safety Research Center have studied GDL extensively since its inception, and that work continues. Below are a few key points about this system, and a brief explanation of the effects that the changes proposed in SB 69 would produce.