Your child’s safety is always on your mind. You want to ensure they stay away from danger and harm, and it becomes harder to do that as they get older, and especially when they have a driver’s license. With the ability to go out onto the road alone, how can you keep them safe?
Car crashes cause the most fatalities among teenagers, according to a report from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Teenagers alone made up 7% of deaths in motor vehicle accidents.
Consider the following ways you can protect your teenager when they’re on the road:
- Practice with them – Even after your teenager has their license, the best way for your teen to grow more comfortable with driving is by spending more time on the road. Let them drive when you need a trip to the grocery store, so you can be there to help them and remind them of traffic laws.
- Teach them car maintenance – The more informed your children are, the better decisions they can make. If they understand what to do when the air pressure signal comes on or how to change a tire, your teenager will be more prepared when they’re on the road alone.
- Slow down when driving – All kids learn by example, so if you regularly speed on the road, your teenager might too. Adjust your driving habits so your child follows along, but also remind your teenager to keep a safe distance between cars.
- Limit the number of passengers – The more passengers in a car, the more distractions. If your teen wants to drive their friends home after school, you should set a limit for how many people are allowed in the car with them.
- Don’t drive under the influence – Teens who see their parents drive after drinking are likely to do the same. Make sure you set the right example for your kids while also reminding them of the importance of designated drivers. You should also tell them not to be afraid to call home for a ride; many teens may drive home drunk to avoid getting caught for drinking in the first place.
- Put your phone away – Texts and social media can easily distract your teen driver. Tell your child to keep their phones in their bag or pocket – somewhere out of reach, so they’re not tempted to pick it up while driving.
It’s inevitable that your teenager will learn how to drive. No matter how much you may dread the day, the best way to prepare yourself – and your teenager – is to consider these tips and set ground rules for your teenager to follow. The more prepared your teenager is, the safer they will be on the road.