Teen Drivers: Extra Laws to Protect Them and Others
By Scott O’Sullivan, O’Sullivan Law Firm
I’ve been writing about teen drivers lately because I keep hearing from friends and clients that they are grateful for the information.
Here are the topics I’ve already covered:
- Things you should look for in a driver training school
- Driver permit process
- A parent contract for teen drivers
So, once your teenager gets that coveted Driver’s Permit or the full Driver’s License, what are the additional laws that he or she faces? I grabbed the following directly from the Colorado Department of Transportation, which is a very handy site for parents of young drivers.
The rules of the road apply to drivers of all ages, but there are certain additional restrictions that all teen drivers need to know.
Teens with a permit:
Teens with a permit must be accompanied by a driving instructor, parent, legal guardian or a licensed adult 21 years of age or older (authorized by parent/guardian) in the front seat, buckled up.
Teens with a license:
- For the first six months, no passengers under 21, unless a parent or other licensed adult driver is in the vehicle.
- For the next six months, one passenger under age 21 (unsupervised).
- Siblings and passengers with medical emergencies are exceptions.
- At any time, no more than one passenger is allowed in the front seat.
Mandatory seat belts
By law, ALL teen drivers and passengers must wear seat belts (no sharing!).
Cell phones and texting banned
Teens under age 18 are prohibited from using a cell phone while driving. Teens can be fined and may risk losing their license. Exceptions include emergency calls to the police or fire department.
For the first year as a licensed driver, your teen must abide by a curfew—no driving between midnight and 5 a.m. unless accompanied by an instructor, parent or legal guardian. Exceptions include: driving to/from school/work (signed statement from school/work required), medical emergencies and emancipated minors.
Curfew laws may vary by city or county. To properly follow the curfew in your area, please confirm restrictions with your local government.
Zero tolerance for drunk driving
Eight young people die every day in the U.S. in alcohol-related crashes. Talk with your teen about the dangers of driving drunk or riding with someone who has used alcohol or drugs. Driving under the influence of alcohol—even a trace of alcohol on minor drivers—is punishable by law.
If you haven’t already, please check out my Parent Contract for Teen Drivers. Not only does it set in writing the basic expectations that you have for your teen, but it opens up important conversations.
Please call the O’Sullivan Law Firm if you have any questions at all: 303-388-5304.
A few years ago, a Mathnasium opened at 2500 East 6th Avenue and I’ve heard good things from friends whose children go there for extra math support. Here is a bit of information I’ve learned about them.
Larry Martinek, creator of the Mathnasium Method, has spent 40+ years designing, developing, and refining a teaching approach that helps kids learn quickly and boosts their confidence right away.
Children don’t hate math,” says Larry Martinek. “They do hate being confused and intimidated by math. With understanding comes passion, and with passion comes growth – a treasure is unlocked.”
The Mathnasium method includes three components:
- Assessments: Students start by taking a customized assessment which pinpoints their needs, allowing instructors to meet them where they are and take them where they need to go.
- Customized Learning Plans: Instructors then design a customized learning plan for teaching the concepts the student needs to master.
- Specially Trained, Caring Instructors Who Teach: Mathnasium’s specially trained instructors implement the learning plan and work with each student to ensure they master the material.
For more information about this program, visit: http://www.mathnasium.com/cherrycreek or call 303-333-MATH (6284).
“I don’t know where I’m going from here but I promise it won’t be boring.”
—David Bowie (1947-2016) on his 50th birthday
Many people believe that your core muscles are the most important muscles in your body. After all, it’s quite difficult to move without using your core. These muscles actually start at your hips and comprise your entire torso up to and including your neck.
Why Strengthen Your Core?
When your core muscles are strong, you have better balance. Your mobility and ability to move in any position without stress or strain is improved. Your posture is better, which actually leads to more confidence and improved health.
And you significantly reduce your risk of injury and pain. According to the American Chiropractic Association, on any given day 31 million Americans are suffering from back pain. The following exercises will help you stay strong and pain free.
The plank is a movement that really works your entire core. Lie on the floor in a push-up position. Press up until your arms are straightened and hold the position. That’s a plank. You can make it more difficult by dropping to your forearms.
From the plank, turn your body so that you’re reaching up to the ceiling with one arm. You are supported by one arm and your legs.
Lie on your back on the floor. Tighten your abs. Raise your legs and shoulders/arms off of the floor. Keep your core muscles tight and hold the position for 10 to 20 seconds. Now roll over, without touching the floor with your hands if possible. Your arms and legs are still off the floor and you’re positioned as if you’re superman flying through the air. Chest and thighs aren’t touching the floor. Hold the position, roll to your back and repeat.
Finally, let’s not forget the good old-fashioned sit-up. Consider putting a small bolster or pillow under your lower back to offer support. On the floor, place your arms straight behind and above your head. As you sit up, swing your arms with you and use the momentum to help you up. The movement isn’t complete until you touch your toes with your fingers. You can modify the movement by letting your knees fall to the outside in a butterfly position.
If you have access to a glute hamstring developer machine at your gym, aka GHD, then you can use this machine to perform sit-ups and hip and back extensions. Before you try these movements, it’s important to get instruction on proper form. You can hurt yourself if you perform the movement incorrectly.
Add core strengthening movements to your workout routine at least twice a week. A stronger core will make your other exercises easier. You’ll burn more fat and have a healthier and stronger core.