SOUTH CAROLINA

0
IN 2017 MOTOR VEHICLE CRASHES
0
TEN-YEAR TOTAL
1000000
ANNUAL ECONOMIC COST OF MOTOR VEHICLE CRASHES

Hot Now: Graduated Driver Licensing Laws

traffic-yellowSouth Carolina needs improvement because of gaps in Advocates’ recommended optimal laws, as reported in the 2019 Roadmap Report.

Highway Safety Laws Needed

  • All-Rider Motorcycle Helmet Law
  • 
GDL – Minimum Age 16 for Learner’s Permit
  • GDL- Stronger Supervised Driving Requirement
  • GDL – Stronger Passenger Restriction
  • GDL – Age 18 for Unrestricted License
  • Ignition Interlocks for All Offenders
  • GDL Cell Phone Restriction

Current Optimal Highway Safety Laws

  • Primary Enforcement Seat Belt Law (Front & Rear)
  • Rear Facing Through Age 2 Law
  • GDL – 6-Month Holding Period Provision
  • GDL – 30-50 Hours Supervised Driving Provision
  • GDL – Nighttime Driving Restrictoin
  • Child Endangerment Law
  • Open Container Law
  • All-Driver Text Messaging Restriction

*States are credited with having laws only if their laws meet Advocates’ optimal criteria

South Carolina Rating: Caution

In 2017, 134 people were killed in crashes involving young drivers in South Carolina.

The current GDL law in South Carolina includes the following components:

  • A three-stage licensing system beginning at age 15 for learner’s permit, age 15 years and 6 months for the intermediate stage, and age 16 years and 6 months for full licensure
  • A mandatory 6 month holding period for the learner’s permit stage
  • A minimum of 40 hours of supervised practice driving during the learner’s permit stage, at least 10 of which must be at night
  • A prohibition on unsupervised nighttime driving between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m. (standard time) or 8 p.m. and 6 a.m. (daylight savings time) during the intermediate stage
  • A passenger restriction prohibiting more than two passengers younger than age 21 unless driving to or from school
  • A texting ban for all drivers (primary enforcement)

These changes are needed to improve South Carolina’s GDL law and meet optimal GDL provisions:

  • Require age 16 for entry into the learner’s permit stage
  • Extend all restrictions on teen drivers through age 17
  • Strengthen the passenger restriction to prohibit more than one non-familial passenger under the age of 21 unless a licensed driver over age 21 is in the vehicle, for the entire intermediate stage through age 17
  • Add a prohibition on non-emergency use of cell phones and other communications devices , including texting while driving, during the learner’s permit and intermediate stages

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