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For Immediate Release
January 29, 2003
Contact: Dan A. Gwadosky
207-626-8400

Secretary Gwadosky to Address Windham Rotary
Presentation to Outline Safety Issues Surrounding Young Drivers
and Proposed Legislation for a Graduated Driver Licensing System

Thursday, January 30, 2003 at 12:00 p.m.
Charlie Beigg's Restaurant
754 Roosevelt Trail (Route 302), Windham

Secretary of State Dan A. Gwadosky will speak to the Windham Rotary on Wednesday, January 30, 2003, at the Charlie Beigg's Restaurant in Windham. Secretary Gwadosky's topic will be Maine's Newest Drivers at Risk and will provide information and insight regarding issues involving teen drivers. His presentation will begin at approximately 12:15 p.m.

Over the past several years, the Department of the Secretary of State has sought to involve parents in their teenager's driver education and has encouraged parents and teens to communicate with each other about the responsibilities of driving. Requiring 35 hours of driving time with an adult (preferably a parent) before requesting a road test and developing a Young Driver Parent/Guardian Driving Contract that helps open up the lines of communication are just a couple of initiatives that have sought to focus families on these issues.

Unfortunately, recent crashes across the state involving young people have highlighted the importance of finding innovative solutions to prevent future tragedies. Over the past six weeks Secretary Gwadosky has met with a variety of groups to discuss the issues surrounding young drivers and to formulate legislative proposals concerning the driver licensing system for new drivers. Secretary Gwadosky's discussion will focus on trends in young driver crashes and proposed solutions, including the Department of the Secretary of State's legislation to introduce a new Graduated Driver Licensing System.