Freshmen Talk: Driving Towards Independence

REGAN LAVALLEE

In the state of Colorado, you are allowed to obtain your permit at age 15. As the class of 2018 begin to take the wheel, what do they fear the most and how do they plan on being successful drivers?

According to DriveSteady, teen drivers are ten times more likely to be involved in a crash within their first year of driving. Having almost four months driving experience, freshman Nick Salay said, “I am afraid of getting into an accident.”

Some freshmen who have been driving for about two months, like freshman Janey Galligan, still are familiarizing themselves with their own abilities. “I’m really bad at turning so I always feel like I’m going to over or under turn and hit another car or a person. That’s really stressful,” Galligan said.

Like Salay and Galligan, many of the freshmen are concerned about their actions on the road.

Freshmen who have been driving longer fear the actions of surrounding drivers. Tom McCloskey said, “I’m afraid of other distracted or incompetent drivers.”

The Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles makes it a requirement to take part in a Drivers Ed program. This ensures that teens are exposed to emergency situations and learn the skills needed to solve them.

Getting her permit just under a month ago, freshman Annie Chambless said, “I went to Peak Drivers’ Ed and feel more prepared to drive.”

Like any other new skill, practice makes perfect. In order to improve at driving, beginning drivers are required to log a minimum of 60 hours. This ensures plenty of practice in a variety of conditions.

Even though the fear of an accident is in the minds of the class of 2018, they are all looking past that fear towards the freedom that lies ahead, making improvements along the way. “I’m very excited to become a better driver and eventually get my license because then I’ll have another state of independence,” Galligan said.

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