Parents Help Your Teens become Responsible Drivers
Getting their driver’s license is one of the most important days of a teen’s life! It’s something they’ve looked forward to, representing a sense of freedom. Unfortunately, we parents don’t always share the same vision. As our teens begin to get behind the wheel, there are some things you can do as a parent to help maintain your child’s safety, and your sanity.
Kids learn from the examples they are shown; monkey see, monkey do! This means that our kids can pick up on our bad driving habits. On the plus side, if you are that parent that comes to a complete stop at stop signs and consistently wears your seat belt, there’s a good chance your child will follow suit. Safe and responsible driving is just another thing that we, as parents, pass down to our kids.
Studies show that with parental involvement in their education, students perform better in school. This holds true for driver’s education, as well. Parents who understand the process of getting your license and keeping updated on what their child is learning in driver’s ed. can offer more relevant advice and create opportunities for their child to practice necessary skills.
Teenagers also need to understand that unsafe and irresponsible driving has its consequences. Parents can help by explaining to their teen drivers that getting tickets and being involved in accidents will raise their insurance costs and jeopardize their driving privileges. Furthermore, unsafe driving can lead to life-changing injuries to themselves and others. Most insurance providers offer some sort of “good student discount”, which is a great way to associate school performance with driving.
There are times when all the preparation in the world cannot prevent an auto accident from occurring. This is why parents must also ensure their teen driver knows what to do if involved in an accident. Instruct your teen to immediately call the police, and then call home after an accident happens. Also, have your teen keep a pen and paper in their glove box, alongside other important documents, to take down the names and addresses of those involved and witnesses to the accident. Finally, be sure to remind them that they should never admit fault to the accident with anyone other than the police and their insurance company.
Remember that driver’s education does not end once your teen is fully licensed; it’s an ongoing process. The more knowledge you share about defensive driving and the dangers of getting behind the wheel after drinking, or texting while driving, the more our teens will practice responsible driving habits.
Help yourself worry less when you hand the keys to your teen, by helping them become responsible drivers!
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