What’s the Louisiana Graduated Driver’s License Program?
Louisiana is one of the few states that has earned a green light from the Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety for adopting a significant number of safety components to make driving, walking, and riding on public roads safer than ever. Part of this safety initiative is the adoption of a three-part licensing program that provides new drivers with the extra time they need to develop the skills and behaviors to be safe on the road.
Part one of the program starts when a teen completes a state-approved driving instruction course, reaches age 15, and passes the written and vision tests to obtain their learner’s permit. The new driver will use their permit for six months or longer to gain 50 hours of supervised driving experience, with 15 of those hours being driven at night.
Part two begin when the driver has acquired the 50 hours of drive time and reaches the age of 16, at which time they can take the road test for their restricted, intermediate license. While they have this license, they are not allowed to drive between the hours of 11 a.m. and 5 a.m. or have more than one passenger under 21 years old unless a licensed adult over 21 is in the vehicle with them. The intermediate license is held for at least one year, and when the new driver reaches the age of 17 the restrictions are lifted, and full driving privileges are given.
Keep in mind that seatbelts are mandatory for all passengers aged 16 or younger, with children from birth to age five secured in the appropriate child seat or booster seat. Failure to use the proper seat restraints can result in a penalty of $100 for child seats and booster seats, and $25 for non-belted adults.
While holding a learner permit or intermediate license, all hand-held cell phone use is banned. Hands-free cell phone use is prohibited for novice drivers under 18 or those in their first year being licensed. All motor vehicle ors in the state are banned from texting while driving.