Learning to drive is an exciting milestone for your teenager, but it also comes with additional responsibility. While your teenager may feel excited about driving, you may worry about his or her safety.
Part of becoming a safe driver involves learning certain skills and developing certain habits. As a parent, there are things you can do to help your teenage driver stay safe on the road.
Master the fundamentals
Before getting behind the wheel, your teenager should have a solid grasp of the rules of the road. Go over the basics, such as traffic signs, signals and right-of-way rules.
Practice defensive driving
Emphasize the importance of defensive driving techniques. Encourage your teenager to anticipate the actions of other drivers and prepare for unexpected situations. Defensive driving can help prevent accidents and save lives.
Set a good example
Teenagers often learn by observing their parents’ driving habits. Make sure you set a positive example by following the rules of the road, wearing your seatbelt and avoiding distractions while driving.
Distracted driving is a leading cause of accidents among teenagers. Teach your teenager the importance of staying focused on the road and avoiding distractions such as texting, talking on the phone or fiddling with the radio while driving.
Provide opportunities for practice
Ensure your teenager gets plenty of practice behind the wheel in various conditions. Start with low-traffic areas and gradually progress to more challenging environments.
Promote seatbelt use
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2020, of drivers between the ages of 16 to 19 killed in a car accident, 56% did not have a seat belt on. Emphasize the importance of wearing seatbelts at all times to your teenage driver.
While your teenager may take action to stay safe while driving, other drivers are not always as careful. If your teenager sustained injuries in a car accident, take steps to protect his or her rights.