Parenting teenagers can be a difficult task sometimes, but it’s possible to do it right if you try. If it has gotten to the point in time where your teenager is ready to become a driver, you can give them some advice to make sure that they stay safe while on the road. Here are five tips to share with your teenager to help them drive safely.
Keep The Car Well-Maintained
A well-maintained car can not only provide better service but is also a lot safer to drive. Regular car maintenance is key to ensuring that you get the most optimal performance out of your car. This enables you to get a longer lifespan for your car. Check your mileage and your service sheet to always make sure you don’t miss your next oil change and general service. Always have a checklist to guide you. The engine, transmission, electrical, and suspension are the most important areas to repair when necessary. The brakes are also crucial to remember, with bad brakes being a major factor in rear-end collisions. The inability to stop in time makes a vehicle more likely to ram into the car in front of it. The same survey by the NHTSA reported that brakes alone are responsible for 22% of car accidents as a result of mechanical failure.
Avoid Distractions While Driving
Driving requires total and undivided attention. Any form of distraction is an invitation to an otherwise avoidable disaster. Texting while driving is the number one distraction for many drivers, both teenagers and older. Remind your teens to always keep their eyes on the road at all times and keep their phone away or on silent to minimize any possible distraction.
Perform Repairs As Soon As Possible
Keep the car in top-notch condition by performing repairs as soon as they are required. With the total economic toll taken by accidents on the economy of the United States standing at about $250 billion, you can be sure that there’s a large number of mechanics available to take care of your car. Whenever your teen senses an issue starting up, they should take their car for analysis immediately so they can have the issue solved and not have to fix the other things that will invariably get destroyed if the problem is ignored.
Don’t Go Over the Speed Limit
While speed is thrilling for most young drivers, it’s not safe and you need to remind them about this. Let them know that it’s important to drive at the speed limit or lower whenever possible. This is because the higher the speed they drive, the less control they have of the vehicle and the lower the ability to brake in good time.
Never Drive While Under the Influence
Tell your teen that they should under no circumstances drive while under the influence of anything. Drugs and alcohol inhibit the reaction time and decision-making capabilities of the ablest drivers so it’s the worst thing that they could do while driving. If they have to go to a party, tell them they should arrange for alternative means to leave rather than drive while under the influence. They will also avoid potential jail time, with a first-time DUI in Maryland, for instance, resulting in $1,000 fines and up to one year in jail.
When you share the tips above with your teen, you will be able to have some peace of mind knowing that they’re likely to drive safely. Lead by example and don’t do things you’ve cautioned them against doing, and your advice will be more likely to stick.