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Mazzeo Bill to Promote Road Rules among Young Drivers Continues Advancing in Assembly

Legislation Commemorates High School Students Killed in 2011 Auto Accident

(TRENTON) – Legislation Assemblyman Vince Mazzeo sponsored to increase new drivers’ understanding of automobile laws and boost awareness of New Jersey’s Graduated Driver’s License (GDL) program continued advancing Monday in the state Assembly.
The legislation (A-3276), which is known as the “Mainland Memoriam Act,” honors Mainland Regional High School football players who died in an August 2011 tragic motor vehicle accident on the Garden State Parkway. Of the eight teenage athletes traveling in an SUV to a team breakfast, four – Edgar Bozzi, Casey Brenner, Nick Conner and Dean Khoury – were killed.
“The untimely passing of the Mainland Four is a heartbreaking example of just how dangerous driving on the roads can be, particularly for those with less experience. As our community continues to honor their memories, it’s important that we learn from what happened and work to prevent similar incidents from happening in the future,” said Mazzeo (D-Atlantic). “By promoting greater awareness of the state’s graduated driver’s license program and the associated restrictions placed on new drivers, this legislation can help prevent tragic accidents and save lives.”
The bill would direct the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission to create graduated driver’s license informational material to be distributed by automobile dealers. The legislation would require the MVC chief administrator to create the material, which would detail the laws and conditions applicable to holders of special learner’s permits, examination permits and probationary driver’s licenses, and provide the material to automobile dealers. Dealers would then distribute the material to buyers or lessees at the time of purchase or lease of a vehicle.
“Teenage drivers are four times more likely to be involved in a car accident than members of other age groups, and often factors like having too many passengers in the car play a role,” said Mazzeo. “The GDL program is designed to be an effective way of combating that statistic, but it can only work if parents and young drivers know and understand the rules.”
Under New Jersey’s GDL law, drivers under the age of 21 may operate a vehicle accompanied by only the following passengers:
? Special Permit Holders and Examination Permit Holders:
– Supervising driver who is over 21 and licensed to drive for at least three years
– Parent, guardian or dependant
– One additional passenger, unless accompanied by a parent or guardian.
? Probationary (formerly Provisional) License Holder:
– Parent, guardian or dependant
– One additional passenger, unless accompanied by a parent or guardian
Failure to abide by any GDL restriction is a violation subject to a $100 fine.
The measure was released by the Assembly Appropriations Committee and now awaits consideration by the full Assembly