Portola Pilot

Why Student Drivers Should not be Allowed to Drive

Jane Zou

Jane Zou

Jordan Lee and Dylan Thakarar

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The current age for teens to get a license is 16. The ability to drive gives teenagers the freedom to transport themselves across town, as well as alleviate stress from their parents’ busy schedules. However, teenage drivers are inexperienced, immature and more susceptible to distracted driving than adult drivers, and therefore should not be encouraged to start driving.

“In 2015, 42% of high school students who drove in the past 30 days reported sending a text or email while driving,” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “In 2015, 2,333 teens in the United States ages 16–19 were killed and 221,313 were treated in emergency departments for injuries suffered in motor vehicle crashes in 2014. That means that six teens ages 16–19 died every day from motor vehicle injuries.”

Many teenage drivers have proven themselves to be reckless, irresponsible and unaware of the consequences of their lack of attention on the road. However, a benefit to early-age driving is the responsibility and independence it teaches students. It allows student drivers to get to and from school without relying on other sources of transportation.

“I think it’s really cool because we don’t have any school buses to rely on, so it’s a good way for us to be independent,” sophomore Manon Wilson said.

Texting and driving is a problem in our current day and age, and the widespread use of social media and cell phones for communication is one of the main culprits. “Texting while driving increases a teen’s risk for having an auto accident by 400 percent,” reported TeenSafe.com.

“I think that the driving age should be 21, because this is when a person becomes a full adult and is responsible enough for their own actions,” freshman Caleb Mei said.

In short, teenagers are not responsible enough to drive because of their tendency to get distracted and their inexperience on the road. If teens continue to drive recklessly, more and more drivers risk injury or death. With immaturity and irresponsibility at the wheel, no street, freeway, or road is safe.

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Why Student Drivers Should not be Allowed to Drive