More teen drivers are hitting the roads, new study shows trends

ROCKFORD, Ill (WIFR) -- More teens are taking driving courses now than they were in 2012. A new AAA study suggests this trend could promote safer driving down the road.

Teen driving on the rise

"There are more teenagers out there today that have gone through Drivers Ed," says AAA spokesperson Molly Hart. "What that does is provide more safety on the road for our drivers, both teens and adults."

Although younger drivers might cause concerns for more experienced drivers, Hart says this is a positive change. "They should find a peace of mind knowing that these students and these 16 year olds are wanting to get the proper training," she tells 23 News.

The study shows 68 percent of young adults that held off on getting their license is because they were too nervous to get behind the wheel. People 18 years or older are not required to take a driving class.

"It's not required that they receive any kind of driver training," explains Rockford Police Departments Assistant Deputy Chief Kevin Ogden. "They can basically study for the test, and take the test without having the practice hours."

Police and local drivers education instructors say it's crucial for new drivers to experience all road conditions and highway driving before obtaining a license.