Did you know that most drivers feel safer driving in the summer than the winter? It makes sense, since the weather is warmer, there’s more daylight, and far more relaxed schedules. However, the summer months also mean more drivers between the ages of 16-20; who carry a higher rate of accidents. While it may be a little anxiety inducing – we’ve got you (and your kid) covered with these 5 helpful tips to keep your teen driver safe.
- Buckle up: You would think that this was a given but sometimes we all need a reminder – but teen drivers are the least likely to wear a seat belt despite having the highest accident rate. So, whether they’re driving to the mall or off to a friend’s house, remind them to buckle up!
- Preach defensive driving: A good driver is a prepared driver, so teach your teens to always be aware of the other guy; you can never assume what another driver is going to do.
- Keep the number of passengers to a minimum: Given that distracted driving caused by other passengers is the leading cause of teen car crashes, agree upon a limited number of people that are allowed in the car when your teen is driving. Also check your state laws as some states don’t allow teen operators to have passengers under 18 when they are behind the wheel.
- Turn the music down: We know. Sometimes the best part of taking a drive is putting on your favorite song, doing a little car dancing, and of course singing along. However, according to AAA 8% of teen accidents are caused by music related distractions. The best thing to do here is to teach your teens good driving habits like changing the radio station only when stopped, setting up Bluetooth, and keeping the volume at an acceptable level.
- Put away the cellphone: Cell phone usage is responsible for a large portion of teen driver accidents. So, encourage your teen to put away their cellphones when behind the wheel. If you want to take it one step further, you can install specially designed apps on their phones that prevent them from texting and driving.