TENNESSEE

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

Tennessee Rating: Caution

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

Highway Safety Laws Needed

  • Primary Enforcement Seat Belt Law (Rear)
  • Rear Facing Through Age 2 Law
  • Booster Seat Law
  • 
GDL – Minimum Age 16 for Learner’s Permit
  • GDL – Stronger Nighttime Restriction
  • GDL – Age 18 for Unrestricted License
  • Open Container Law

Current Optimal Highway Safety Laws

  • Primary Enforcement Seat Belt Law (Front)
  • All-Rider Motorcycle Helmet Law
  • GDL – 6-Month Holding Period Provision
  • GDL – 30-50 Hours Supervised Driving Provision
  • GDL – Passenger Restriction Provision
  • GDL – Cell Phone Restriction Provision
  • 
Ignition Interlock Law
  • Child Endangerment Law
  • All-Driver Text Messaging Restriction

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

Hot Now: Graduated Driver Licensing Laws

In 2017, 124 people were killed in crashes involving young drivers in Tennessee.

The current GDL law in Tennessee includes the following components:

  • A three-stage licensing system beginning at age 15 for learner’s permit, age 16 for the intermediate stage, and age 17 for full licensure
  • A mandatory 6 month holding period for the learner’s permit stage
  • A minimum of 50 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 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. during the intermediate stage
  • A passenger restriction prohibiting more than one passenger
  • A prohibition on non-emergency use of hand-held and hands-free cell phones during the learner’s permit and intermediate stages
  • A prohibition on texting while driving for all drivers

These changes are needed to improve Tennessee’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 nighttime teen driving restriction

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