Safest States for Student Drivers

Girl learning to drive

It is estimated by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) that it takes most people 45 hours of lessons to learn how to drive, plus an additional 22 hours of practicing on average.

As young drivers between the ages of 15 and 20 years old account for around 6.4% (13.3 million) of total drivers on the road, we have decided to investigate which states are the safest for student drivers.

States with the most restrictions for student drivers

The restrictions student drivers face vary from state to state with full privilege in North Dakota being at 16 years old, whereas drivers in Indiana having full privilege at 21 years old.

Through researching the laws each state has for student drivers, we can reveal that the state with the most restrictions is Indiana where students don’t get full driving privileges until they’re 21. They also have to have 60 hours of supervised driving and can’t drive between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

New York has the second most restrictions for student drivers overall, with drivers getting full privilege at 17. Students in the intermediate stage are prohibited from driving between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m.

Maryland has the third most restrictions for student drivers. In the learners stage, student drivers must have 70 hours of supervised driving hours. During the intermediate stage, drivers are prohibited from driving from midnight to 5 a.m. and get full privilege at 18.

Slowest states in the U.S.

Exploring the U.S. by road is one of the best ways to travel and experience everything the country has to offer. Speed limits vary by road and state so there are no one-size-fits-all answers here. Speeding has been involved in approximately one-third of all motor vehicle fatalities. In 2020, speeding was a contributing factor in 29% of all traffic fatalities.

Alaska is the slowest state on average with the speed limit being 55 mph across rural, urban and other limited roads. Vermont is the second slowest state with a 65 mph average speed limit on rural interstate roads, a 55 mph speed limit on urban interstate roads and an average speed limit of 50 mph on other roads.

The next slowest states are New York, Oregon and Rhode Island where the average speed limit on rural interstate roads is 65 mph, and 55 mph on urban interstate roads and other roads

States with the strictest speeding laws

Speed limits vary across the U.S., as do the punishments, depending on how fast you are above the speed limit and which state you are speeding in.

In Arizona, drivers can find themselves with up to a $250 fine and three points on their license if caught by a speed camera. This is five times the $50 fine that drivers in Tennessee find themselves with if they’re caught speeding.

In New York, speeding drivers can find themselves with jail time based on the number of miles per hour over the speed limit, with fines up to $1,200!

Oregon has different fines depending on whether drivers are in a school zone or safety corridor, and also how many miles per hour drivers are over the speed limit. With a maximum fine of $1,000 for drivers who are between 21-30 mph over the posted limit and in a school zone or safety corridor.

Speeding drivers in Maryland may also receive large fines with a maximum of $1,000 in work and school zones.
Illinois drivers face community service if they choose not to pay the $250 fine for speeding. If they are speeding 26-34 mph over the maximum limit they can also face up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,500.

Choosing the right vehicle for a new driver

When the time comes to pick a car for a new driver, it’s probably not the best decision to run out to get the most expensive car on the lot. Instead, new drivers should research all the options available, including how the auto finance process works and their budget.

Once a new driver has all their research prepared, this is when the fun begins – shopping and test driving! However, don’t let this send you down the path of getting the fastest car on the lot. Instead, make the smart choice of choosing something safe and comfortable to drive.


Researchers gathered student restrictions for each state and then ranked each state for a number of categories for each student driver stage. The states with the highest ages for across stage, most hours of supervised driving and the most hours of prohibited nighttime driving were determined as the ones with the most restrictions.

The slowest states were revealed by looking at the speed limits for rural and urban interstates and other limited roads and then ranked from the lowest speeding limit to the highest.

The team. also researched the strictest speeding laws by gathering data from the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) and then ranked them on whether state law speed cameras are permitted or limited and which states have the highest penalties in regard to speed, points and fines.