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Ohio Teenagers Would Have To Wait One Year To Get Drivers' License Under New Bill

Driving simulator
Andy Chow
Ohio Public Radio

A new bill in the Statehouse would change the requirements for teenagers to get their drivers' licenses — just as another law takes effect changing drivers' education requirements for adults.

H.B. 293 would double the time drivers under 18 would be required to have a temporary permit — from six months to twelve months. That means young drivers would have to wait a year until they could get a full license.

The bill would also shift nighttime driving restrictions to 9 p.m. instead of midnight. Co-sponsors Gary Scherer, a Republican, and Michael Sheehy, a Democrat, told the Columbus Dispatch that 75 percent of nighttime crashes involving teens occur between 9 p.m. and midnight.

Their proposal comes just as a law is taking effect that changes the rules for drivers who wait until age 18 to get a license.

Under the old law, they're allowed to do so without taking driver’s education. But now, failing a driver’s test on the first try means adults would have to take a four-hour driving class, plus up to 24 hours of driving accompanied by a licensed adult who is at least 21.

Kabir Bhatia joined WKSU as a Reporter/Producer and weekend host in 2010. A graduate of Hudson High School, he received his Bachelor's from Kent State University. While a Kent student, Bhatia served as a WKSU student assistant, working in the newsroom and for production.