Unlicensed drivers and those rolling on revoked or suspended documents are nearly three times more likely to be involved in a fatal accident, according to a recent DMV look at 23 years of crash data in California.

That stunning statistic has some calling for a reevaluation of the state's denial of licenses to illegal immigrants, who aren't eligible to drive legally under Gov. Pete Wilson-era law.

The DMV says in a summary that …

… unlicensed drivers tend to be more hazardous than suspended/revoked drivers.

That last bit tends to reinforce the idea that training to pass the California drivers test is good for your skills.

Unfortunately politics have prevented undocumenteds from getting licenses in the Golden State. And illegals make up most of the unlicensed around here.

Legislator Gil Cedillo, who's running for L.A. City Council, got a law passed allowing them to get licenses but was rebuffed by then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger despite promises to sign the law.

It's a hot button. But maybe things are changing.

The powerful LAPD union known as the L.A. Police Protective League has been against the department policy to stop towing the cars of people simply because they're unlicensed.

Now, LAPPL president Tyler Izen tells the Los Angeles Times:

If you don't hold people accountable to acceptable standards, then we get people that aren't prepared and don't have the skill set.

In a recent statement sent to the media, Lancaster Mayor R. Rex Parris said what we've been saying for a while — they're here, they' integrated into our lives, get them licensed:

It is time that everyone recognizes that undocumented immigrants are already an integral and permanent part of our communities and are not going away; they are here to work and live in our state. California has two legitimate, primary purposes in issuing driver's licenses: the maintenance of safe streets and highways and the preservation of the integrity of the driver's license by ensuring that an individual proves their identity in the application process. Most undocumented immigrant drivers drive without being trained, tested, licensed, and insured. That must change.

[@dennisjromero / djromero@laweekly.com / @LAWeeklyNews]

LA Weekly