Legal action against parents of underage drivers | Daily News

Legal action against parents of underage drivers

National Council on Road Safety Chairman Dr. Sisira Kodagoda yesterday said plans are afoot to take legal action against parents or guardians of underage drivers.

Dr. Kodagoda speaking to the Daily News said the parents or guardians who allow children below the age of 18 to drive should be at the receiving end of the issue and tragedy behind it. According to Dr. Kodagoda, parents and guardians should be aware of the risk and illegality of the action. “So that would be the recent we might have to look into penalizing the parents and guardians of underage drivers. We are to carry out discussions regarding this proposal in the near future,”Dr. Kodagoda said.

“The dialogue on taking legal action against parents or guardians of underage drivers comes in the wake of the death of a schoolboy in Thalawa in a motor cycle accident,” Dr. Kodagoda explained.

The deceased was a Grade 10 student of Kiralagama Subodhi Vidyalaya, whose motorbike veered off the road due to high speeding.

“This was just one case; there have been many similar incidents and the situation keeps getting from bad to worse.” Dr.Kodagoda added.

Dr.Kodagoda also added that the usage of helmets in rural areas has dwindled. He identified the situation as another grave issue which should be quickly addressed. 


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It is a shame that spoilt little rich brats and their arrogant parents think they can let their kids drive dangeroulsy and get away with it. We had to drive with an L BOARD with another licensed adult to learn how to drive. Then we had a serious road test before we were awarded a DL. I remember even having to stop on top of the Jawatte hill, use my right foot to manage accelerator and brakes and not slide down on the test. I had practiced a lot. In the USA yes 16 year olds get a learner's permit after taking a test and at 16 and a half get a restricted driver's license. The conditions attached to it are strict. If you are caught violating those, insurance will not cover your damages. It is not to say there are foolish show off drivers but the difference is, in Sri Lanka the roads are still 100 years behind times to accomodate the massive overflow of traffic. It is eventually the values of the parents that matter. If they think they are above the law, and let their kids run amok and not take responsiblity then you create a generation of arrogant kids who think they are entitled to special ways. Even after getting my license in Sri Lanka, I got a speeding ticket at Thunmulla. My father was very angry and let me take the punishment. People do foolish things and even in the USA teen drivers are the highest insurance risk pool. Add to that, liquor or drugs and then those driving under the influence are as dangerous as a terrorist. Give those rascals heavy punishment and slam them in juvenile jail for manslaughter if they kill people and take away their right to a DL for a decade.

When children misbehave it is already a tragedy and punishment for parents. When children under 18 are punished, the parents pay the fine anyway.


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