Protecting your teen driver
When a teenager receives their driver’s license for the first time, it’s seen as a symbolic “ticket of freedom” from their parents. However, for many parents, this “ticket of freedom” often keeps them up at night with worry.
According to the CDC, car crashes are the leading cause of death for U.S. teens.
January is Teen Driving Awareness Month, a time dedicated to educating new drivers and parents about how to stay safe behind the wheel. The below tips will help keep your teen safe while avoiding an insurance claim.
- Choose a safe vehicle. When choosing a vehicle, you should make sure it is easy to drive and has updated safety features.
- Enroll your teen in driver’s education. Driver’s education will allow your teen to practice driving and learn the rules of the road. Additionally, a driver’s education course can result in a discount from your insurer.
- Come to an agreement with your teen. Set boundaries with your new driver. Boundaries can include limiting passengers, preventing “night driving,” and making sure they always follow the speed limit.
- Discuss the dangers of drugs and alcohol. Talk to your teen about the risks of using drugs and alcohol. Stress the importance of never getting into a vehicle with a driver who is under the influence or getting behind the wheel if they are under the influence.
- Stress the danger of distracted driving. Explain the dangers of texting and driving as well as other distractions that could take their focus off the road, including changing the radio or chatting with friends.
- Practice driving in situations. Take your teen driving and gradually work up to driving on freeways, during heavy traffic hours, at night, and during bad weather.
- Understand your state’s laws. Know your state’s laws for teen drivers – for example: is there a curfew?
- Model good driving behaviors. Be a role model for your teen driver. Always buckle your seatbelt, drive the speed limit, and never drive under the influence.
Insurance Information Institute