New Drivers faced with that task of earning a drivers license most people have no idea where to start. Outside of being able to name a few parts of the car (windshield, tires, bumper, side looky backy mirror thingy), some people have absolutely zero experience with private vehicles, let alone driving.  Others have probably played some video games, took a few mental notes while in a fancy Uber, and drove a bumper car or two in their day.

Regardless of where you fall on the spectrum of “Brand New” drivers, we have summarized the basic training protocols in order to make a solid training recommendation for our new drivers.

According to the New York DMV (and most other state’s DMV), a teenager must have completed 50 hours of driver training in order to earn a driver’s license. (Ok, we get that. But why 50 hours? )

  • Lack of experience. The act of driving, while highly variable from trip to trip, is still a repetitive behavior. Not only do the systematic processes create muscle memory, your brain is also trained to memorize patters, variables, and learn risk mitigation techniques.
  • Driver Limitations- Judgement. This is much like the “lack of experience” justification. However, it goes a little deeper into the essance of a teenager, and their brain. Bad judgement permiates off of teenagers like the perfume of a Kardashian. This is largely due to the development of the teenage brain. While this isn’t a reason to absolve a teeanger of responsibility, it is plenty of reason to impose training regulations to the age group.  
  • Propensity for Distraction. Teenagers are reportedly 75% more likely to admit being distracted following their involvement in an automobile accident. Now remember, that’s 75% more likely to ADMIT they were distracted. Statistically speaking, distracted driving is likely to contribute to over 60% of all vehicle related incidents. The distinct difference between teen drivers vs. adult drivers is the liklihood of screen addiction in teenagers, paired with their limited judgement, and lack of experience (now we sound like doomsdayers.)
  • Memorizing The Act of Driving. While most people are familiar with muscle memory, they may not be aware of our brain’s ability to memorize behaviors and actions that are repeated. Even though driving is a constantly changing variable, there are certain aspects of driving that are memorized. This is the same theory as “it’s just like riding a bike.” Once you learn to ride a bike, you no longer focus on the act of riding, and rather on the act of going somewhere. The same is true for driving. However, letting the subconscionsious drive can work against drivers and create an environment of complacency (that can be dangerous.) The 50 hours of instruction should be designed to build confidence in the repetitive action, and sharpen the skills of awareness.

It’s obvious that a lot of thought went into the driver training regulatoins for teens, and inadvertendly the local municipalities have set great guidelines for any new driver. While an adults brain (over 25 years old, has stopped the rapid growth seen in the earlier years) the lack of experience and inability to learn at the same pace offset a more mature mindset.  

Many students feel comfortable and confident after only a few lessons, and let’s face it….no one is forcing you to get 50 hours of training. The truth is, many of our students really are competent drivers after only a few lessons. However, they are still inexperienced and although they may be the safest driver that has ever graced the black top with their presence, they are still not equipped to handle the other millions of drivers who are not safe. They have never handled adverse weather conditions, driving directly into the sun (or the bright headlights of an oncoming semi), pedestrians, road rage, trying to park in New York City, or little else other than their comfortable driver’s training course.

Practice makes perfect, and in this instance – you are truely investing in your safety. To sign up for our 50 hour driving package, click here.