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Are Drivers Getting Older?

Fewer and fewer teens in Shafter and Lamont are heading to a nearby DMV Office on their 16th birthdays to pick up their new drivers’ licenses.

According to the government, fewer than 1.1 million Americans 16 and under have a driver’s license. That’s the lowest figure since the 1960s, when the population was far smaller. Some observers point to a combination of a tight economy and the rise of social media. Many families cannot afford to buy a car for a teen, and many teens do not have the money for gas. Additionally, many teens do not feel the need to physically connect with each other as much, since texting is so much easier.

Car crashes are still the leading cause of death for teenagers, although the number has plummeted since graduated licensing laws came along in the 1990s and 2000s.

Teen Driver Laws in California

In a bygone era, part of the drivers’ license acquisition process involved packing as many friends as possible into the vehicle and driving in a borderline unsafe manner to a destination that was not within walking distance.

But, for better or worse, the thrill is gone. In 1998, California became one of the first states to institute a graduated drivers’ license that basically applies to drivers and potential drivers between 15 and 19. For the first 12 months, new teen drivers cannot have a passenger under 20 or drive at night without a supervising driver that is at least 25.

Furthermore, the cell phone laws are primary laws, meaning that an officer can pull over a driver for nothing other than a cell phone violation. In California, it is illegal for minors to use any cell phone for talking or texting; adult drivers may talk on cell phones if they are hands-free.

Getting Legal Help

The aggressive attorneys at Bigger & Harman, APC, are committed to giving individuals a voice when dealing with speeding and traffic tickets. Call today at 661-349-9300 or email attorney@markbigger.com to receive the personal professional attention you deserve. En español, llame al 661-349-9755.