ATHENS, Ala. (WHNT) – It’s been more than a decade since a drunk driver claimed the life of David Taylor, but for his family the loss is as fresh as if it had just happened.
A new state law was passed as a result of that crash. Taylor’s Law is designed to teach young drivers to be responsible for their actions before they climb behind the wheel. The problem is Taylor’s Law was passed and signed into law, but it has never been implemented. Now, a growing number of people say it’s time.
Kevin Taylor tells us his brother’s death is still foremost on his mind. There were four boys in the family and they had always been extremely close.
“It’s tough. When I needed help, you know, he wasn’t going to be there. My hunting buddy, fishing buddy, gone. That was tough,” Taylor explained.
Taylor says the guy who crashed into his brother’s car was drunk and had been taking drugs. What’s more, he was only a teenager. That’s why Taylor and his family and friends worked for five years to pass Taylor’s Law. But in the five years since it was passed, he says it’s never been implemented.
The law was intended to link a student’s behavior at school to his or her qualifications to obtain a drivers license or learner’s permit. Problem students would be required to wait before being able to drive in Alabama.
Mike Curtis was a member of the state legislature at the time and sponsored the measure. “What is the hold back on implementing this since Gov. Riley signed it into law,” he asks?
Former state representative and educator Henry White, also in the legislature at the time, was the bill’s co-sponsor. He says it would be a benefit to schools and students.
“Well we got a law on the books. If it’s on the books, do it. Enforce it. There’s no need in passing something and let it, like I say, sitting back in a corner collecting dust. That’s not right,” White told WHNT News 19.
Kevin Taylor tells us if the law simply prevents one teenager from making a fatal mistake, it will have been worth the trouble and maybe his brother will not have died in vain.
Taylor’s Law, the first of its kind in the nation, was to have started with the 2010 school year. Former Representatives Curtis and White, and even Mr. Taylor say they’ve had no response from state officials when they try to find out why the law was never implemented.