Illinois GDL Program Saves an Estimated 40 Lives from Car Accidents in Chicago and Elsewhere

A recently study concluded that the lives of approximately 2,000 people could be saved every year if every state were to push a comprehensive Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) program. According to USA TODAY, supporters across the nation are urging lawmakers to enact GDL programs like the one in the state of Illinois.

Effective GDL programs help to thoroughly educate these drivers and can significantly reduce the risks of fatal car accidents in Chicago and elsewhere.
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“We knew that when states pass good laws, lives are saved and a lot of money is saved. We’d just never done the analysis,” says John Ulczycki from the National Safety Council (NSC).

Our Chicago car accident attorneys understand that it takes a lot of time and practice for our young driver to master the tools to become a good, safe driver. Our state has been an example for many GDL programs in the country. In the state of Illinois, teens must practice at least 50 hours of supervised driving with a licensed adult over the age of 21 before receiving a full driver’s license. In addition to these requirements, our GDL program places a number of restrictions on these young drivers to make sure they master all driving skills thoroughly before they can obtain an unrestricted license.

In Illinois, nearly 40 lives are believed saved every year because of our effective GDP program.

This new report comes as Congress looks to consider a new transit and highway-spending bill. Those who support the GDL program are looking to get their hands on roughly $25 million a year to use as incentives to get states to buff up their GDL programs.

Car accidents continue to be the number one killer of teens in the county. Drivers ages 16- to 19-years-old are four times more likely to get into a serious accident than any other age group of drivers.

Each state has its own version of a GDL program, which bestows drivers with more driving privileges as they gain experience behind the wheel.

Ulczycki and says there are seven key points to an effective GDL program:

-A minimum age of 16-years-old to get a learner’s permit.

-At least 30 hours of supervised driving during the learner’s license stage.

-Six months of supervised driving before being able to drive with no supervision.

-A minimum age of 16 1/2 for intermediate driving.

-Placing a curfew of 10:00 p.m. for intermediate drivers.

-Allowing no more than one passenger (non-family) during the intermediate license stage.

-A minimum age of 17 for a restricted license.

Regardless of what the current GDL program requirements are, parents are urged to stay involved in their teens driving career long after they’ve been granted unsupervised driving privileges. Parents may be some of the most influential individuals in their young driver’s lives.

If you or your teen driver has been injured in a traffic accident, the Chicago injury attorneys and wrongful death lawyers at Abels & Annes offer free and confidential consultations to discuss your rights. Call (866) 99-ABELS. There is no fee unless you win.

Additional Resources:

Study: Phased-in teen driving privileges could save 2,000, by Larry Copeland, USA TODAY
More Blog Entries:

MADD Teams Up With NFL to Reduce Risks of Teen Car Accidents in Chicago and Elsewhere, Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog, December 7, 2011

Teen Allegedly Causes Five-Car Accident in Chicago and Flees Scene, Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog, November 30, 2011

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