As a parent, you’ve conquered everything from diapers, to homework, to school dances. Now it’s time to help your teen learn how to drive. Before you hand over the keys, let us help you prepare your teen to be a safe driver. Learn more
NEW FREEDOM. MORE SAFETY.
Driving gives teens new freedom. Safety doesn’t always come with it. Many teens face danger on the road because of a lack of experience. The good news is that there are positive actions you can take to help educate and encourage safe behavior from your teen driver.
Washington Department of Licensing provides these great resources to help parents supervise while their teen gains experience behind the wheel.
DRIVER ED PARENT NIGHT
Driving schools in Washington are required to offer a parent night as part of their driver education program. Ask about it! At these events you’ll see a preview of what your teen will be taught, learn more about the intermediate driver license, and get to know the driving instructors.
LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH FOR TEENS
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for young people ages 16-25 in Washington. This is why our state has an intermediate driver license and a requirement for driver education.
More than 100 young people die on Washington roads each year, and it’s completely preventable. Research shows that parent involvement makes a positive difference in a teen’s driving.
GUIDELINES FOR YOU AND YOUR TEEN
Intermediate Driver License (IDL) requirements are designed to improve the safety and ability of drivers ages 16 and 17.
- For the first 6 months: no passengers under age 20 (except immediate family members)
- After 6 months to age 18: no more than 3 passengers under age 20 (except immediate family members)
A traffic ticket or involvement in a crash is an IDL violation.
- First violation: passenger and nighttime restrictions will apply until age 18 and a warning letter is sent to parents/guardians
- Second violation: 6-month license suspension (or until age 18, whichever comes first) and a notice of suspension sent to parents/guardians
- Third violation: suspension of license until age 18 and a notice of suspension sent to parents/guardians
Hours of driving
Until age 18, teens are not allowed to drive between 1:00 and 5:00am unless accompanied by a parent, guardian, or licensed driver at least age 25.
Cell phone use
Until age 18, teens with intermediate driver licenses or learner permits can’t use a wireless device while driving, including hands-free devices (except to report an emergency).