QUINCY (WGEM) — If you’re a parent, you probably worry about your teen driver out on the roads. According to a new survey from WalletHub, Illinois is the 9th safest state for teen drivers.
For 16-year-old Hunter Rischar, driving is a bit new, considering he’s only had his drivers license for a week.
“You just have to keep in mind that you’re on your own now,” said Rischar.
Rischar went through the drivers ed program through the school district. Then he had to drive with his parents in the car with him for nine months, which he feels was adequate training to get him comfortable behind the wheel.
“It just helped you being extra safe and cautious,” said Rischar. “Also the program of having 50 hours of driving before you get your license really helps because you have a lot of practice and you know exactly what you’re supposed to do.”
According to a WalletHub, a drop in fatal crashes involving teens is due in part by the state’s graduated driver licensing program. In fact, from 2018- to 2019 there was a 51 percent decrease in deadly teen crashes.
Quincy Firefighter Captain Chris Bichsel think’s the state’s program is working.
“For the first year, they can only have one additional passenger in their vehicle and I believe there’s an 11 o clock curfew, they can’t be driving after that,” said Bichsel.
However, if we want to continue to keep teen drivers safe, Bichsel says everyone needs to cut back on distracted driving.
“I think it’s the same for teens and adults, it’s the texting and being on their phones,” said Bichsel.
In the WalletHub survey, Iowa ranked 14 for safest states for teen drivers. Missouri ranked 48 in safest states for teen drivers.