Teens are the least experienced drivers and more likely to cause accidents compared to skilled drivers. Car accidents are the leading cause of teen deaths in the United States. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety revealed that teens crash three times more than drivers aged 20 or above. Common mistakes like driving too fast, failing to detect a hazard, drowsy driving, and being distracted account for dangerous crashes. However, you can always explain and exemplify safe driving to your teens.
Here are 8 safe driving tips for teens to ensure a safer time when they hit the road.
1. Drive with Them As Often As Possible
The University of North Carolina’s Highway Safety Research Center revealed that at least 110 hours of supervised driving is required to ensure crash-free driving among teen drivers. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that the risks of getting involved in a crash are higher during a driver’s first month. Thus, make sure your teen has had maximum practice before they drive alone.
2. Limit Possible Distractions
Texting, checking emails, or talking on the phone while driving is major distractions and can prove dangerous for inexperienced drivers. As recorded by the American Automobile Association (AAA) Foundation for Traffic Safety, distractions account for 58% of all crashes. Ask your teen driver to switch off their mobile, put it on the dashboard while driving, or hand off the device to another passenger.
3. Limit the Number of Passengers in the Car
Multiple passengers in the car can pose added risks to the teen driver. Talking, singing, or any other fun activity would affect the driver’s attention on the road, eventually resulting in an accident. Ask your teen to limit the number of passengers for safe driving.
4. Ask Them to Wear a Seat Belt
Wearing a seat belt while driving is the best way to stay safe in a vehicle. Seatbelts reduce the chances of moderate-to-critical injury by 50% while reducing the death rates by 45% during an accident. Make sure your teen driver buckles up their seat belt before starting the car.
5. Talk to Your Teen About Distracted Driving
Besides texting, other distractions can also result in accidents. According to the American Automobile Association (AAA) Foundation for Traffic Safety, singing along with a radio, searching for objects inside the vehicle, or looking for an address can cause distractions leading to accidents. Ask your teens to focus on the road while driving and keep their radio volume low so that they can hear other cars and emergency vehicles passing.
6. Supervise Their Driving at Night Or on Unfamiliar Terrains
Nighttime driving is not easy, especially for new drivers. Where possible, supervise your teen’s driving at night or in adverse weather conditions. Ask them to follow the speed limits, particularly while driving on unfamiliar terrains.
7. Exemplify Non-Aggressive Driving Behaviour
The American Automobile Association (AAA) found that 56% of car accidents happened due to aggressive driving. Ask your teen drivers to remain calm while driving. Even if they are angry, ask them to calm down before they resume driving. Also, practice what you preach by being a non-aggressive driver yourself.
8. Ask Them Not to Drink and Drive
Drinking before driving is not safe, so explain the negative consequences of drunk driving to your teen driver. Help them understand the risks they pose to themselves and the others on the road when they drive under the influence of any impairing substance, including alcohol and drugs.
These teen driving tips can help your teen be a safe driver. Make sure to buy the right auto insurance coverage for your teenage driver to protect them from accidents and collisions. For assistance with all your coverage needs, contact an insurance professional at Westwood Insurance Agency today. We will help you choose the right insurance that meets your unique needs and budget.