The Iowa Senate’s Transportation Committee has approved a bill that would place new driving restrictions on teenagers.
If the bill becomes law, teenagers who hold one of Iowa’s new “intermediate” driver’s licenses would have to be off the streets by 11 p.m. The current curfew for those drivers is 12:30 a.m. Senator Matt McCoy, a Democrat from Des Moines, originally proposed an even earlier, 10 o’clock curfew.
“I think that parents need to be the enforcers, but in the interest of compromise I would like to change the curfew on this to 11 p.m. and then continue to allow the waiver for work and school functions,” McCoy told the committee.
According to McCoy, research shows a correlation between accidents and inexperience behind the wheel.
“The majority of the accidents are occurring between the hours of 10 and midnight,” McCoy said. “I do think there’s a missing link in this and that is the parental involvement.”
The bill also would make another change. The bill would allow just one teenage passenger in a vehicle being driven by a teenager. Under current law, teenage drivers may have as many teenagers in their car as there are seatbelts.