Parenting teenagers can be challenging since there is a lot of ground to cover and a lot of lessons that still need to be taught. One of those challenges is teaching your teen how to drive.
A few simple tips you can use to teach your teen safe driving habits can go a long way in keeping them safe on the road. Teaching safe driving habits to your teenager is critical.
Why Road Safety Has To be Enforced
One of the key challenges when parenting teenagers is giving them the power to make their own decisions while ensuring they have the information to make the right decisions. When parenting teenagers, there is a lot of negotiating that must take place. Road safety can never be negotiable.
There are an estimated 6 million car accidents each year in the US. Teens and the elderly are neck and neck for top crash victims. Teaching driver safety to your teen is essential to keeping them safe on the road. An accident can also be costly. About one-third of the vehicles involved in an accident typically sustained damage to their bumper.
The road is a dangerous place. In Texas, during the 2017 winter holiday season, there were more than 2,500 vehicle accidents. Many of those accidents were attributed to distracted driving, which leads to the first tip.
Tip Number One: Make it a Rule to Connect to Blue Tooth in the Car
Distracted driving is as dangerous as drunk driving. Anyone parenting teenagers can tell you how addicted to their phones teenagers can be. With the need to be on their phone all the time, they may have a tendency to respond to a text or change the music on Spotify. Even these small tasks can be dangerous.
There were about 3,000 fatalities in 2019 related to distracted driving and about 130,000 injuries related to texting and driving. Keeping your teen off the phone while they are driving is vital. Make it a rule that they either connect to Bluetooth, or their phone is turned off.
It is very tempting to be on your smartphone while driving. About 51% of smartphone users are discovering new companies and products every day, but they should not be doing it while driving. Make it a rule to connect to Bluetooth when in the car and model that behavior.
Tip Number Two: Teach Them To be Cautious and Courteous
It is important that your teen fully understands the rules and laws of the road, which also includes unspoken rules. Teach your child to be courteous of other drivers on the road. Many accidents occur simply because two drivers just refuse to get out of each other’s way. Teaching road manners will help to keep them safe.
Speed limits are important to follow but so is teaching your child not to tailgate behind drivers that are moving a little slower. Courteous driving habits can help your teen to avoid an accident. A recent study by the Texas Department of Traffic found that courteous driving reduced accidents by 29%.
Tip Number Three: Modeling Is the Best Behavior
One of the best ways of parenting teenagers is to model the behavior you want them to adopt. Whenever your child is in the car show them how you want them to act. Do not use your phone while driving, be courteous to other drivers on the road, and keep speeds at the limit.
Ideally, you will start showing your children what you expect from them by modeling safe driving behaviors from the time they are old enough to be in the car. There is no greater teacher than modeling the right behavior. Working with your teen on driver safety is the best way to keep them safe on the road.