AUGUSTA, Maine — More than a year after a Bucksport teen died in a car crash, her parents and lawmakers are proposing more restrictions for teen drivers.
LD 737, also known as Taylor’s Law, is named for Taylor Darveau, who was 15 when she was killed. Another teen was behind the wheel and wasn’t legally allowed to have any passengers.
“It’s the worst thing you can ever [go] through,” said Taylor’s mother, Christina Darveau.
Christina and Corey Darveau are trying to spare other families from the same pain.
“There are some loopholes in the system,” said Corey Darveau.
Last year, they started the Taylor Foundation and have sold 1,200 “T.A.Y.L.O.R. Tags.”
The decals identify intermediate drivers who face restrictions, such as only having passengers who are immediate family members or a licensed driver who is 20 or older.
“Some may call it aggressive,” said Christina Darveau. “We’re being aggressive.”
The Darveaus are working with Sen. Kimberley Rosen, R-Bucksport, on a bill that would make the tags a requirement across the state. The bill also would extend the learner’s permit period from six months to a year, and it would require an accompanying licensed driver to be 25 years old instead of 20.
Rosen said she also would like to see the intermediate license be required for a year instead of nine months.
“A year may seem like a long time to a 16-year-old, but I think it’s worth it,” said Rosen.
Harry Epp, a board member with the Maine Driver’s Education Association, opposes the legislation. He said teens will be targeted.
“Every pervert will know we have a single person, a young person, driving by themselves,” he said. “They could be stopped, and anything could happen.”
The Darveaus said it’s no more exposure than social media and school decals.
“Teens today run around with ‘Class of 2015’ on their cars, their mascot,” said Darveau.
A public hearing Tuesday afternoon was standing room only. It was a reminder to the Darveaus that they’ve already raised awareness.
“We’re not going to save them all, but if we save just one, then what we’re doing here today is worth it,” said Darveau.
The Darveaus said, pass or fail, the bill is a step forward in their mission to keep teens safe on the roads.