Teaching your teenager to drive safely is one of many parental responsibilities. One might argue it should be at or near the top of the list.
It is important to know what steps to take to raise a trustworthy driver.
Lead by example
Your actions greatly influence your child’s behavior. Display safe driving habits by consistently obeying speed limits, wearing your seatbelt and using turn signals.
Warn against distractions
Explain the risks of texting while driving and other distractions, such as eating or playing music at too high a volume. Stress why drivers must focus on the road at all times.
Emphasize wearing seatbelts
Seatbelts save approximately 15,000 lives per year, according to the United States Department of Transportation. Even in minor accidents, seatbelts can be essential in preventing harm, and young drivers should understand the importance of always wearing them, regardless of how long they are in the car.
Discuss the dangers of going too fast and the potential consequences. Encourage obeying speed limits and slowing down when encountering poor road and weather conditions.
Talk about drugs and alcohol
Have an honest conversation about the perils of driving under the influence. Make it clear that intoxicants impair judgment and reaction times, with potentially deadly consequences.
Encourage defensive driving
Spend time chatting about the art of driving defensively. Go into detail on possible hazards and how to react to them. Emphasize why you should maintain a safe distance from other vehicles and avoid aggressive behaviors.
Getting adolescents to be conscientious drivers is one of the most important parts of being a parent. Teaching good driving habits could prevent an accident that may result in a lifelong injury.