In New Jersey, you can see a teen driver coming your way, thanks to a new law that requires drivers younger than 21 to put a small red decal on their license plates.
But it’s not just the teens that are seeing red – it’s their parents as well. Many are concerned that it signals out minors to stalkers, and could lead to stalking at night or while teen girls try to get to their cars at parking lots.
The red decal comes into effect under Kyleigh’s Law, which is named after Kyleigh D’Alessio, a 16-year-old New Jersey girl killed in a 2006 car accident that also injured two others. New Jersey is the first state to attempt to make young drivers known to law enforcement by marking their vehicles.
The law has been in effect for over six weeks now, and fewer than half of the 250,000 young drivers covered by Kyleigh’s Law have bought the decals as of yet, which cost $4 for a pair. Teens caught without the decals face a $100 fine. And the decal may get shut down just as soon as it’s gotten started, as lawmakers have already introduced bills to repeal the new law.
Stats show that around 6,000 teens die in car accidents nationwide each year, and drivers are most accident prone in their first two years on the road. New Jersey instituted a Graduated Driver License program 10 years ago that carries a curfew and limits on the number and ages of passengers who can be in a provisional driver’s vehicle.
What do you think? Will the red decal do more harm then good in terms of a teen driver’s safety, or does it promise to save lives? Leave your comments below.