The Coastal Post - May, 1998

Young And Old At Greatest Risk

By Submission

Teenage drivers and those over age 80 are more likely to be involved in at-fault fatal collisions than other motorists. The Department of Motor Vehicles reported these results from a study done by the Beverly Foundation of Pasadena. The age-risk findings confirm those of earlier studies; what has changed is the age composition of the driving public.

The number of licensed teens fell 22 percent from 1981 to 1995. Teens are waiting longer to become licensed and there has been a small decline in the teen population.

The number of drivers over 65 is growing and is expected to soar.

DMV Director Sally Reed points out that the number of drivers who do become involved in fatal and injury collisions is relatively small-less than two percent. "In all age groups, the vast majority are safe drivers," she said.

Sixteen and 17-years-old teens licensed after July 1 will be barred from driving between midnight and 5 a.m. unless accompanied by a licensed driver at least 25 years old. For the first six months, they will be barred from transporting other teenagers.

Drivers 70 years and older must renew their licenses at a DMV office instead of by mail, in order to take a written test and have their vision checked.

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Major changes in how the DMV verifies legal presence and provides expiration dates on some driver licenses and ID cards was implemented April 15.

DMV field offices statewide will be able to verify documents related to legal presence directly with the Immigration and Naturalization Service via computer.

Another change is that the expiration date on a card will be on the exact date the legal presence document expires, rather than the nearest birth date.

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