What Is the Impact Texas Young Drivers Program?
Earlier this year, Texas enacted a law that requires all new drivers license applicants to complete the Impact Texas Drivers (ITD) program before they can get their first license. Currently, ITD is offered in two formats. All new drivers under 18 must complete the Impact Texas Teen Drivers (ITTD) program, while older drivers can fulfill their requirement with the shorter Impact Texas Young Drivers (ITYD) program.
Why Is the ITYD Program Important?
The ITYD program is a one-hour, three-module video that shares the stories of real Texans who've been impacted by distracted driving. It was developed by the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) with the ultimate goal of saving lives. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, one-in-five of the state's car accidents - more than 109,000 in 2016 alone - are caused by distracted driving. The aim of the ITYD program is to reduce that number through education.
Who Needs to Complete the ITYD Program?
All Texas drivers who are applying for their first license, regardless of their age, are required to complete the ITD program in one of its formats. Here's a breakdown by age group:
- Drivers under 18 should complete the ITTD version of the program. 18 and 24 who took a teen drivers education course should also complete the ITTD version of the program.
- Drivers 18-24 who took an adult drivers education course should complete the ITYD version of the program.
- Currently, drivers over 25 should also complete the ITYD version of the program. The Texas DPS is in the process of developing a format of the program for adults, but it won't be released until 2018.
Signing Up for the ITYD Program
New drivers can register for the free ITYD program online. The entire video doesn't need to be watched in one sitting, but each individual module does need to be viewed in its entirety in order for your progress to be saved. Be sure to complete the ITYD program within 90 days of when you plan to get your license as your certificate of completion is only valid for that length of time.
What Comes Next?
After you've completed the ITYD program and any necessary drivers education requirements, the next step toward getting your license is scheduling an appointment at a DPS office. Along with documents verifying your identity, social security number, legal status and Texas residency, you'll also need to bring along a printed copy of your ITYD certificate of completion.
Once you've submitted your paperwork and passed your driving test, you'll be ready to hit the road equipped with an understanding of the dangers of distracted driving.