A Raleigh teen and a Piedmont teen were recently arrested under North Carolina's new zero-tolerance law teens driving at excessive speeds. As of last October, a driver under age 18 on a provisional North Carolina driver's license can be arrested if stopped for going 15 mph over the posted speed limit. An adult driver in the same situation would merely receive a speeding ticket.
Any misdemeanor moving violation by a teen driver with a provisional license is now grounds for arrest. Teen drivers can also be arrested for passing a school bus, driving over 80 mph and careless, reckless or aggressive driving under the new law. Once arrested, the teen driver can elect to leave his or her car at the scene or to have it towed elsewhere. A magistrate judge will decide whether the teen driver's license will be suspended after arrest for up to 30 days.
The law is intended to protect teens and others sharing the road with inexperienced drivers from serious and even fatal injury in a motor vehicle accident. Car accidents are the number one cause of death among teens across the United States. The North Carolina Highway Patrol reports that a teen driver is involved in a car accident almost once every 23 minutes with speed being the most common factor.
But some believe the legislature went too far. Being arrested and taken into custody for a traffic violation may be a bit excessive. Some parents are concerned that an arrest for speeding may pose problems for their son or daughter when trying to get into college.
Source: MyFox8.com, "Teen drivers arrested for speeding after new law passes," Kristin Nelson, March 27, 2012