Having a teenager can be stressful. Between homework, extracurricular activities, dating and expenses, it's no small wonder parents and their children keep (some of) their sanity during the teenage years.
Teenagers are also hungry for trying new things and going to new places, and once they can drive, the world becomes a lot bigger — and more dangerous. Here are some tips to help keep your new teenage driver stay safe on the road.
Put away electronic devices
It almost goes without saying (but still has to be said — repeatedly), but putting away electronic devices is the most important thing a teenager can do to stay safe on the road. Texting while driving is never OK, even when stopped at a light, and neither is hands-on talking on the phone. Texting while driving takes eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds. Depending on speed, a teen can easily travel the length of a football field or more during that time, space in which a lot can transpire to harm your teenager or others.
Obey the speed limit
Another obvious principle of driving but one that needs to be impressed upon your teen, is speed limits are meant to keep people safe while ensuring traffic moves smoothly. If someone were to get in a wreck because of speeding, there is a good chance injuries, or worse, will be involved, for your teen and the other people on the road. There is wisdom in not speeding, nor in driving too slowly, where the greater good for the community is satisfied in being able to commute in a safe, timely manner.
Know how to drive in adverse weather
Their first few times in weather such as heavy rain, snow or hail is scary, and something teenagers are rarely prepared for. Experiencing these conditions without prior instruction and practice can be terrifying, easily resulting in slide-offs, fender benders and major accidents. Teach your children correct principles of driving in all conditions, and make sure their vehicle has tires with plenty of tread. They will be grateful to you once the precipitation starts falling.
In addition to laws about the age of passengers allowed, teens should limit the number of passengers who join them on drives. Even when parents aren't looking, teens should understand how the car and drivers around them are going to act and react in various driving scenarios. This time in the car is invaluable for building confidence behind the wheel, especially when the designated time does arrive, and they're piling seven of their best friends in the family minivan.
Along with putting the phone away, it is easy to minimize distractions before beginning a trip. Teach your teen to adjust mirrors, seating position, temperatures and other settings before pulling out of the driveway. Driving distracted, phone or not, is dangerous and has the potential for big consequences.
As hard as it may be to ensure the safety of your teenage driver, accidents still happen and victims need an attorney they can trust. The attorneys at Ed Bernstein & Associates have more than 40 years experience in personal injury law and understand its finer nuances. Visit edbernstein.com or call 702-240-0000 to find out how to get started on the road to recovery.