Parenting a teen is an experience that can leave you with a lot of mixed emotions. If you have one that’s become a new driver, it’s your duty to make sure they do the right thing and stay safe on the roads at all times. Here are a few things you need to warn them about so they have better chances of coming back home safely every time.
Never Drink and Drive
The first thing they need to keep in mind is that they should never attempt to drive after they have had a drink. Since this is a higher risk at night and during weekends, make sure to remind them every time they leave the house during these times. Let them know that they should also avoid getting into a car being driven by someone who’s been drinking as the risk of the repercussions of an accident will be real for everyone in the vehicle. Not to mention that your car insurance for your teen will go through the roof. Even though in states like California the legal limit for alcohol for someone who is driving is 0.08%, it’s best for your teen to drive while fully sober.
Drive Within the Speed Limit
Another thing to remind your teen is that while speed can thrill, it can also kill. Remind them to always drive within the speed limit as this will help them maintain better control of their vehicle t all times. When they drive at a reasonable speed, they will be better able to brake in time and avoid obstacles. They will therefore be able to maintain their safety and that of other road users. Let them know that speed limits exist for a reason and it’s in their best interests to adhere to them at all times.
Always Keep the Car Well-Maintained
Also, remind your teen driver that they need to take care of their car so they have it operating at its best at all times. This will leave them at a lower risk of being involved in an accident as their car will respond as it should each time. Let them know that it’s both faster and cheaper to get the car regularly maintained than to pay for repairs after an accident. The latest figures from the New York State Department of Transportation for the average cost of an auto accident have a range that depends on where the accident took place. This is between $15,000 on the lower end and $63,000 on the higher end. Most accidents will fall between $30,000 and $40,000, which is still pretty expensive when compared to the cost of regular maintenance and service for the car.
Wear the Seatbelt Every Time
Tell your teen that regardless of if they’re going on a long road trip or making a quick run to the grocery store around the corner, they need to always put their seatbelts on. Doing this is going to take minimal effort and ensure their safety at all times because while out on the road, nothing is ever promised. Having the seatbelt on can make a big difference in a matter of seconds when things take an unexpected turn, so get them into the habit early enough.
Remember All the Rules of the Road
Finally, tell your teen driver that they must always follow the set road rules so that both they and other road users are safe at all times. With a state like Virginia being an “at fault” state, which means that the person that causes an auto accident is responsible for paying for all damages, driving safely becomes a matter of preserving health and saving money.
Remind your teen of the tips above and make sure to also practice them yourself, so your parenting methods are led by example. This will make it easy for them to pick good habits and stick to them, giving you peace of mind that they’re proactively staying safe on the roads.