It is no surprise that parents fear the day their teen goes out on their own behind the wheel of a vehicle. Car crashes are the leading cause of injury and death among teens in the first year of driving.
It is a good assumption that all adults want to shield their child from the risk that driving can bring.
Accident rates are highest during the summer months between June and July, along with weekend days including Friday, Saturday and Sunday, it is essential to always be aware of important safety driving tips.
It’s true that the younger your teen is, the higher their risk for an accident. However, all teen drivers can be at risk if the adult in their life does not take safety precautions starting out to prevent this.
Teens have a lower experience level than the adult in their life since adults typically have been driving for at least several years longer. That lack of experience each teen has is the reason for not having good judgement when behind the wheel. It is imperative for parents to learn the best approach to teach their teen driving safety, what they should pay attention to for a safe vehicle, and what is critical while actually driving.
Tactics for Discussing Safety with Your Teen
Since adults have been driving for much longer than teens, they should not be scared to discuss safety with them. Even though teens can be smart when making decisions, get good grades, or may miraculously listen to most everything you say does not mean they can practice good judgement without proper base knowledge.
It is ok to be the parent in the situation and sit them down for such an important conversation, several times if necessary. Every teen should have expectations and rules laid out to them clearly. Accidents can be attributed to several things such as too many passengers in the car, which should be limited.
Another example may be to lower the use of the car to certain situations such as time of day, distances that can be traveled to, or prohibited during bad weather. Just remember to always keep the lines of communication open. For all adults out there, make sure you practice what you preach too.
Another suggestion is to reward your child when good driving behavior is exhibited such as paying for certain things dependent on goals set forth. These can include car insurance, replacement tires, AAA services, gas costs and several more. Perhaps even paying for a safe driving course which can also help with lowering insurance premiums that the child may be responsible for themselves.
How to Keep a Safe Vehicle
Adults can choose to use newer cars that have more safety features such as back up cameras or cars that speed limits can be set up automatically. For all vehicles that do not include these features there are several other things to pay attention to.
Before sending your teen out on the road, make sure they know to check their rear view mirror, side mirrors, tires, and to always buckle their seat belt. It is also good to make sure headlights are working properly as well as tail lights. Some other things that teens may forget include making sure their windshield is always clean, the gas gauge is never low, and their head rest is set at the proper level.
Every car should have the proper maintenance performed on them yearly. Remember to teach your teen to get the oil changed every 3,000-5,000 miles depending on the make of the vehicle, keep all fluids topped off including transmission fluid, and tire pressure at the correct level.
All of these services can be done at an automotive shop such as AAMCO Colorado. Making sure all of this is properly kept up will significantly reduce the amount of things that can go wrong on a vehicle, which left unattended could ultimately cause an accident.
How to Help Your Teen Drive Safer
It is no mystery that teen drivers have a higher rate of accidents each year than any other age group. One of the most significant things to remind your teen is to drive defensively. This means never assuming what another driver is going to do and to avoid aggressive drivers, as well as avoid being the aggressive driver. You will also want to make sure to look behind you when changing lanes and don’t forget your blind spots.
Most of us know that texting while driving is one of the most dangerous things you can do. In several states this has now become a law and what several teens don’t realize is that includes texting while at a stop light. The law states no texting when behind the wheel at any moment. It would be smart to either turn your cell phone off or set an automatic reply that you are driving.
Another thing to keep in mind is to minimize distractions such as eating, drinking, playing with the radio, or even putting makeup on. Other precautions to practice are avoiding driving while you are tired and, it goes without saying, never drink and drive. All adults should set a no-tolerance policy with their teen for this. Most of us know there are legal limits for alcohol levels but better safe than sorry. Last, but not least, always obey the speed limit and stay within a reasonable limit of it.
If you or your teen would like to know if your car is safe to drive and for more safety tips Schedule an Appointment today with one of our many AAMCO locations. We will work with you for all your safe vehicle needs including general maintenance and transmission repair. Visit our AAMCO Colorado Springs and AAMCO Denver locations for a FREE diagnostic test today.