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New Vt. driver? There's an app for that - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

New Vt. driver? There's an app for that

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MONTPELIER, Vt. -

It's a very exciting day in any kid's life-- passing their permit test. Now it's time to get behind the wheel, and Jasmine Doyle is ready.

"I'm not worried about driving in the winter as much as I am learning in mud season," she said.

And for parents preparing for their new spot in the passenger seat, there's an app for that. It's called Road Ready.

"When I first got my hands on it I said this is not going to be very good, but actually it's kind of fun," said Marty Dexter of the Vt. Department of Motor Vehicles.

It's pretty basic; you just start it up and start your route. Road Ready helps the passenger keep track of when and where the teen is driving and for how long. It also shows a map of where you went.

Once you pass the permit test you have to get in 40 hours of driving time. Every Vermont student takes a driver's education course, but experts say parents are the biggest influence behind the wheel.

"You think alright, let's just get them out on the road. They need to know how to use their turn signals and stop, stuff like that. You are not thinking, oh we have to have the interstate, we have to have nighttime and daytime, each individual step. I think it will help remind people, oh we still have to do that," said mom Shawna Doyle of Chelsea.

It's a stressful time for families-- precious cargo taking the wheel of a very big, expensive machine. It seems counterintuitive-- the DMV urging you to use your phone in the car, but they see it having a positive impact when it comes time to take the road test.

"This is not the future, this is now, and we need to stay up with the times," Dexter said. "Anything that is going to help our kids get more practice and more time behind the wheel. More parents participation in their training is a good thing, right?"

As for Jasmine, she hopes to get in some time behind the wheel right away. And she's already got her route picked out.

"Just on a nice back road with the windows down. I can't wait to be the driver," she said.

And now her passengers can make sure she's road ready by this time next year.

DMV officials say they wanted the app to go live in time for Teen Driver Safety Week which starts Monday.

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