• Paige Lewis

Driving regulations go too far

Getting my license was supposed to be one of the most exciting times in my life. I finally had an unknown freedom that I’d never experienced before. But all of the sudden, I was told I had to abide by all these new rules aimed at “keeping myself safe”.

Driving shouldn’t turn into a punishment for young kids. Everyone was young once, but the laws have started to become ridiculous. They have changed significantly in the past 20 or so years.

I understand when a person first gets their license they aren’t acclimated to situations that can come up on the road. But on the other hand, the driver’s test isn’t that hard to pass and the BMV is putting these individuals out on the road so they should be able to handle themselves while driving. They are obviously a good enough driver to pass the test.

Before I even got my license, I had to have a piece of paper that says I drove with a parent or guardian for 50 hours or more. I spent 24 hours in my in-cars as well did my time in a drivers education class. Once I passed my drivers test, I had to have my license for an entire year before I could drive more than one person who was not apart of my immediate family.

Most people don’t follow this rule because it is unnecessary and inconvenient. Also, it doesn’t make sense. If someone has three siblings, they can drive those three siblings as well as another friend. However, I have one sibling so I could only drive my brother and a friend.

The point of the law is to reduce distraction in the car, it is more of a distraction to have a car full of five people rather than three.

For the first year anyone has their license if they get pulled over or in an accident, it is automatically their fault and they could potentially get their license taken away anywhere from six months to when they turn 18. I was terrified the entire first year I had my license because I didn’t want to hit anything or get a speeding ticket because I knew the consequences.

But then I wonder, is that what they want us to feel? Should we fear driving because we are afraid of getting into an accident. I guarantee every single person who has their license has gone over the speed limit at least once in their life. There is no possible way people couldn’t.

So this consequence is unfair to new drivers because they would a) get points on their license and b) get it suspended for a certain period of time depending on how fast they were driving. However, a parent would just get points on their license.

When my parents were growing up, they got their license and were free to drive whoever, whenever and however they wanted. They weren’t able to get their temporary license until they were 16, but as soon as they finished all their in-cars and drivers education courses, the driver’s test was the next step. There was no waiting six months.

I think changing the laws back to the way they used to be could be a better option. Even though we would have to wait an extra six months, we would be more mature.

So to make myself clear, I completely understand why these rules are a thing. I appreciate the state of Ohio for trying to keep me and every other young teenager safe. But the rules and laws have become so absurd that it makes students not want to drive as soon as they can.

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