Frazier bill to better prepare youth for driving goes to the governor for his signature

Wednesday, September 13, 2017
 
SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Jim Frazier (D-Discovery Bay) has successfully shepherded a bill through the Legislature that promises to save lives by better preparing novice drivers before they receive unrestricted driver licenses. AB 63 extends the provisional driver license program, which in 20 years of existence has proven to save the lives of drivers 18 and younger, to all drivers under the age of 21. The bill now goes to the governor for his signature.

“A broad coalition of public health and safety organizations, law enforcement, insurance companies, medical associations and child safety advocates support AB 63, which will protect young drivers and make our roads safer for everyone who uses them,” Frazier said.

Provisional licenses specify, with some exceptions, that for the first year after the license is issued the licensee cannot drive between the hours of 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. and can’t transport passengers under the age 21, unless accompanied by a licensed driver or certified driving instructor, with some exceptions.

“By extending the age group for participation in the program, older teen and young adult novice drivers will benefit from the gradual phase-in of full driving privileges over time and in lower risk settings,” Frazier said. “As teens and young adults mature and gain more driving experience under safer conditions, the danger level declines.”

AB 63 is consistent with California’s 2015-2019 Strategic Highway Safety Plan, prepared in part by the California Emergency Medical Services Authority, the Office of Traffic Safety, Caltrans, California Department of Public Health, the California Highway Patrol, and Department of Motor Vehicles, which calls for extending California’s provisional driver's license program to cover novice drivers through the age of 20.

“AB 63 will help protect the lives of our youngest, most vulnerable drivers and the lives of everyone else who travels our roads,” Frazier said. “The accident data is disturbing and can’t be ignored. We are putting young and inexperienced drivers on our roads who are not prepared and are endangering themselves and others. Extending the age for provisional driver licenses is a simple change that will save lives.”

AB 63 is co-sponsored by the California Association of Highway Patrolmen, the California Association for Children’s Safety and Health and Impact Teen Drivers. It is supported by the California State PTA, American Academy of Pediatrics, the Association of California Life and Health Insurance Companies, Peace Officers Research Association of California and a number of other health and highway safety organizations and individual insurance companies, including Allstate, State Farm, Liberty Mutual Co. and Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co.

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Assemblymember Frazier represents the 11th Assembly District, which includes the communities of Antioch, Bethel Island, Birds Landing, Brentwood, Byron, Collinsville, Discovery Bay, Fairfield, Isleton, Knightsen, Locke, Oakley, Pittsburg (partial), Rio Vista, Suisun City, Travis AFB, Vacaville and Walnut Grove.

CONTACT: Andrew Bird (916) 319-2011