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Teens with restricted licenses less likely to drink and drive

A recent study found out that in states like Tennessee, where there are restrictions on teen driving, those teens are also less likely to drive after drinking or to be a passenger in a car where the driver had been drinking. The recent study was the first of its kind that showed a connection between graduated drivers licenses and the impact these types of licenses have on drunk driving.

When looking at how graduated drivers licenses impact drinking and driving, the fact that these licenses restrict nighttime driving, and that most teens who drink alcohol will do so at night, most likely plays a role in the decrease.

The study was published last week online and analyzed data from students between the ages of 16 and 17 from 1999 to 2009.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in the U.S., accidents are the leading cause of death for teenagers and alcohol plays a large role in those crashes. For example, in just 2010 alone there were 1,900 drivers between the ages of 15 and 19 who were killed in a motor vehicle accident. Of those, 22 percent of those drivers had been drinking prior to the fatal crash.

Outside of drinking and driving, in the past other research has also focused on teen driving behaviors. From these studies it has been found that teenage drivers are more likely to send a text while driving. It was also found that teen drivers are more likely to get into a car accident within their first 30 days of driving. This could be due to inexperience.


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