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Top auto insurance companies urge adoption of teen driving law

A coalition of safety advocates, auto manufacturers and top auto insurance companies urged Congress to pass legislation establishing minimum standards for state graduated driver licensing (GDL) laws.

The Safe Teen And Novice Driver Uniform Protection (STANDUP) Act would require states to standardize GDL laws, which research has shown significantly reduce death and injury among beginning drivers, the top auto insurance companies said.

A letter to every member of Congress by the coalition referred to "the unacceptable death and injury toll of novice teen drivers as well as all of us who share the road with them."

More than 7,500 people die every year in auto crashes involving teen drivers, including nearly 5,000 teens. The STANDUP Act would provide incentive grants to states that adopt the minimum GDL standards required in the bill.

According to the National Safety Council, one of the signatories of the letter, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for people 15 to 20 years old and 75 percent of all unintentional teen deaths occur in car accidents.

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