Getting a California Driver’s License
If there are any rites of passage in our culture, it would certainly be acquiring a driver’s license and being able to have the independence of transportation. But like all rites of passage, getting a driver’s license requires persistence, effort, and determination.
So where do you begin? The first step is to familiarize with the process. Your local California DMV is the organization that issues both your driving permit and your driver’s license. In addition, they administer the examinations that are required to validate your qualification for these items. The first exam is the written portion, which is needed to get your permit. The second exam is the behind the wheel road test to get your driver’s license.
Before you can take the permit test, you are required by law if you are less than 18 years of age to take Driver’s Education. Driving accidents are the number one fatality for teens in America, and it is reasonable that students ought to be educated about the dangers and responsibilities that come with operating a vehicle. To complete the Driver’s Ed requirement, you can sign up for a course at your local high school, which is typically free of charge and fits into your daily schedule, also providing you with high school credit. Such courses typically run for 6 weeks. To expedite the process, you may also choose to sign up for a course offered by private companies. Finally, online Driver’s Ed is now available, enabling you to complete the course in as few as 3 days.
After completing Driver’s Ed, you are ready to take the permit examination. This multiple choice test will see if you understand the basic rules of the road. If you pass, you’ll be issued a driving permit, which will let you get your behind the wheel practice.
The next step is to sign up for Driver’s Training, which is offered by private companies. This consists of 6 hours of professional training, as required by law. During driver’s training, a professional driver will sit in the passenger seat and teach you the basic vehicle operation. You’ll go over operations including using the steering wheel, brake pedal, and gas pedal. More advanced lessons later include freeway driving and parallel parking. The 6 hour lessons are typically spaced apart. In between and after the lessons, the rest of the training behind the wheel is to come from your parent or guardian, or anyone over age 25 with a valid driver’s license. Be sure to also get your driving practice under many different conditions: nighttime, snowy, rainy, etc.
Once you gain confidence after a minimum of 6 months of driving with your learners permit, you are ready to schedule your road test with the California DMV. During the examination, DMV staff will sit in the passenger seat and grade your driving ability. If you pass, you will be issued a provisional license, which has a few restrictions on it if you are not yet 18. The restrictions include no late night driving and no transporting under-age passengers in your vehicle. Along with the regular rules of the road, be sure to follow the general laws and courtesies. Otherwise, you will end up with a traffic ticket and traffic school, let alone endangering your own and another’s life. Drive safely.