Spring is here and blossoming here in Texas. When the weather warms up, teens will be spending more time hitting the road. You can help protect them by reminding them of some basic safety tips. Reinforce the idea that “defensive driving” is best, but at the same time, the actions of other drivers cannot be always be controlled, such as encountering a drunk driver.
To better illustrate, according to a study from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, car crashes are a chief cause for teen deaths, with ¼ of those crashes caused by a drunk driver. You can talk to your teen about the repercussions of underage drinking and driving. You can also let your teen recognize the signs of a dangerous or drunk driver and protect themselves. Is the other driver swerving or changing lanes erratically? There is a possibility that that person is driving drunk, which your teen can then report to police officers.
Our blog below discusses some important driving tips to discuss with your teen. You can form plans and create solutions that will can keep your teen safe, but can also give them the driving freedom that they desire.
Maintain your vehicle.
You can remind your teen that driving is a privilege and that one day, when they purchase a car on their own, they must make sure to maintain regular maintenance. For the time being, while they are using your, do your best to keep a regular maintenance schedule. Talk to them about the importance of regular oil changes, tire pressure and rotations, and engine maintenance. Show them how to pump gas or change a tire. Keep an emergency kit in the vehicle and instruct them how to respond to emergencies calmly.
Set very clear boundaries.
Especially if your teen is a newly minted driver, make it a rule to allow them drive for only a few miles, the areas where they drive, or be out for only a few hours at a time. You want to reinforce the idea that they need to slowly get used to driving. Once he or she has gained more experience driving on their own, you can increase the limits to where you and your teen feel comfortable.
Always obey the rules of the road.
It goes without saying that every driver should always obey all traffic laws. Remember, though, that you should also set a good example. Stop completely at a stop light. Don’t forget the safety belts. Explain the dangers and consequences of speeding and other traffic violations. While these may be only a handful of examples, the good lesson your teen can learn may be invaluable.
Different weather requires different driving.
The warmer months of spring and summer may or may not present as many dangers as say, driving in the winter snow. Even in the summertime, we are not immune to thunder and lightning storms that can unpredictably strike. It is always a good idea to let your teen get used to the different climates where you live.
Warn against distractions.
Cell phones, eating, drinking beverages—these are all commonly known distractions. Yet, did you know that beyond these, the largest source of distraction for teen drivers is multiple passengers?
Some studies, such as those presented by the Journal of Adolescent Health , for example, points out that when multiple passengers are in the car, teens may be more likely to take larger risks when driving, or be pressured to “show off,” especially knowing that their parents are not watching. At the same time, passengers may have no idea that they are distracting to their driver friends. Ultimately, it is up to you to communicate with your teen about the risks, and also find was to support their safe driving habits.
If you would like more safety tips, our Galveston personal injury attorneys are more than happy to answer any questions you may have! Contact Daspit Law Firm to speak with us.
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