Handing teen drivers their first set of car keys can carry significant risks. In fact, recent research from the National Transportation Safety Bureau found that drivers ages 16-19 are more likely to be involved in a motor vehicle crash than any other group. Nevertheless, newly licensed teens and their parents can work together to uphold safe driving practices and prevent accidents with these tips.
Tips for Teens:
- Always be prepared- Ensure you are prepared for any scenario on the road by keeping your vehicle stocked with an emergency kit
- Avoid distractions- Keep your hands on the wheel and eyes on the road at all times. Never use your phone behind the wheel. Program your GPS and adjust your radio before driving.
- Never drive impaired- Don’t drive if you’re drowsy or under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Follow the rules of the road- This includes wearing your seat belt, obeying speed limits, using turn signals and limiting the number of passengers in your vehicle.
Tips for Parents:
- Enforce the graduated driver’s (GDL) rules- These restrictions gradually provide newly licensed drivers with more privileges as they get more experience. GDL rules vary by state.
- Discuss the dangers- Have open conversations with your teen about the risk of driving to ensure they understand how serious the consequences of unsafe behaviors can be.
- Set an example- When it comes to driving, your teen will follow your lead. Make sure you set a good example by following the rules of the road whenever you get behind the wheel.
- Secure proper insurance- It’s vital to protect your teen driver as they hit the road by updating your auto policy.