What you need to know about Hawaii's Graduated Licensing Program

   The new Hawaii law establishes a three-stage graduated licensing program for drivers under the age of 18. The program allows beginning drivers to develop their driving skills over time as they gain experience and maturity.

  Key elements of the new "provisional" stage include limits on unsupervised late-night driving and the number of passengers allowed during unsupervised driving.

Rationale

   Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among U.S. teens. Crash rates for young beginning drivers and their passengers are particularly high. Sixteen year-old drivers have higher crash rates than drivers of any other age, including older teen drivers.

   Because of their inexperience, beginning drivers are least able to handle hazardous situations. This, combined with a lack of maturity and aggressive driving behaviors, results in high crash rates.

   Graduated licensing programs, already working successfully in most other states, have resulted in fewer crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving teen drivers.

The Instructional Permit Phase

The person must:

 

  • be at least 15 years and 6 months in age to acquire an instructional permit.

 

  • be in immediate possession of the permit when driving a motor vehicle.

 

  • be seated next to a person who is at least 21 years of age and licensed to operate the same type of motor vehicle. However, between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m., the supervising parent or guardian must be seated next to the minor driver.

 

  • have all occupants wear their seat belts and children under four years of age be properly re­strained within a child safety seat in compliance with Hawaii State law.

 

The permit:

 

  • is valid for one (1) year from the date of issuance; and

 

  • may be renewed for another one-year period no sooner than 30 days before the expiration date of the permit and no later than 90 days after the expiration date of the permit.

 

Failure to renew the instructional permit within 30 days after the expiration date will result in waiting 180 days before being eligible for a road test.

The Provisional License Phase

A person may be granted a provisional license to operate a motor vehicle if that person:

 

  • is at least sixteen (16) years old, but under the age of eighteen (18);

 

  • holds an instructional permit and has held that permit for at least 180 days and there is no pending violation that might result in a suspension or revocation of that person's instructional permit;

 

  • satisfactorily completes a State certified driver's education course and possesses the classroom and behind-the-wheel certificates; and

 

  • successfully passes a road examination test.

 

The person granted a provisional license shall, as a requirement:

 

  • have in their immediate possession their provisional driver's license;

 

  • have all occupants wear their seat belts and children under 4 years of age be properly restrained within a child safety seat in compliance with Hawaii State law;

 

Passenger Restrictions:

 

  • The provisional licensee driver SHALL NOT TRANSPORT more than one person below the age of eighteen (18) without being accompanied by a licensed driver that is the provisional licensee's parent or guardian, unless that person is a household member.

 

Night-Time Driving Restriction:

 

  • The provisional licensee driver SHALL NOT DRIVE between 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m., unless accompanied by either a parent or guardian that is licensed to drive the same type of motor vehicle and is seated in the passenger seat beside the licensee.

 

  • The person granted a provisional driver's license may drive between 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. without a licensed parent or guardian in the motor vehicle only under the following conditions:

 

A. Traveling to or from the licensee's place of employment, where the operation of a motor vehicle is necessary for that purpose. The provisional licensee shall keep in his or her possession a signed statement from the employer containing the employer's:

 

Name, Address, Telephone number, and

 

Verification of employment and work hours.

 

B. Traveling to or from a school-authorized activity, where the operation of a motor vehicle is necessary for that purpose, and the provisional licensee shall keep in his or her possession a signed statement from a parent or guardian containing the parent's or guardian's:

 

Name, Address, Telephone number, and

 

Verification that the operation of the motor

vehicle by the licensee is necessary to travel

to or from the school-authorized activity;

 

provided that under A. and B. above, the provisional licensee shall not transport more than one person under the age of eighteen (18) between 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. without being accompanied by the licensed parent or guardian of the provisional licensee.

 

The provisional license shall expire on the provisional licensee's nineteenth {19th) birthday.

Listed on the Defensive Driving.org and Expertise.com as one of the top ten driving schools in Honolulu, HI