Getting behind the wheel of a car is a true right of passage for most teens, and whole lot of worry and heartache for most parents. Don’t get me wrong; I won’t miss spending 60% of the day in my vehicle chauffeuring my kids from one activity to the next. However, the idea that they can go it alone at the helm of a 4,000 lb piece of machinery when I still have to remind them to feed themselves and brush their teeth does not give me much comfort.
Thankfully I’m not the only one who sees it that way. The licensing process has changed quite a bit, since I earned mine oh so long ago, and the Graduated License has since been introduced. This means new drivers (and parents) will ease into the very real responsibility that comes with operating a vehicle.
The Ins and Outs of Graduated Licensing
Both Alberta and Ontario have graduated licensing requirements that allow new drivers to prove they’re road-ready in incremental steps. The first step is to obtain a learner’s permit, to do so you must:
- Be at least 14 years of age in Alberta, or 16 years of age in Ontario
- Meet the minimum eyesight requirements
- Pass a written exam that tests for knowledge of road safety, signs and signals, and the rules of the road
New drivers with learner’s or G1 licenses must be accompanied by a fully licensed driver at all times, which means my kids can’t shake me just yet. And, practice can only happen at certain times, both provinces restrict new drivers to operating a vehicle during daylight hours only.
Additionally, drivers in the graduated licensing program must maintain a zero blood-alcohol content level at all times.
After the two-year probationary period, new drivers will become eligible for the next phase. In Alberta, drivers take an advanced road test and if they manage to make it two consecutive years without a suspension, they become eligible for a full license. In Ontario, drivers progress from the G1 license to the G2 license, which removes certain restrictions. Again, should the driver remain problem-free for the duration of the G2 licensing period, they will then earn their full license.
The Graduated License gives me a little extra peace of mind. This, coupled with the New Driver Intelligence (NDI) program, which allows parents to use teens real driving data direct from their vehicle, makes coaching a much easier and a far less stressful task. Not only does NDI provide the opportunity to coach for safety, but it also allows parents to reinforce young drivers positive actions with rewards and recognition. This translates to greater road safety for all.
Have more questions?
Let me know and I’ll do my best to address it here for you and all of our readers. Better yet, contact an InsureMy advisor; these guys know their stuff. Email Info@InsureMy.ca or give them a call locally at (403) 410-1896 or toll free at 1-844-410-1896.
Everyday Insurance With Allie
Working mom, lover of the great outdoors and self-professed know-it-all. Our resident blogger, Allie isn’t the insurance guru she claims to be – but she’s learning and we are happy to help guide her. All the while keeping you in the loop on the “insurancey” stuff you need to know.