Driving Tips to Keep Teens Safe
You can’t always be in the car when you’re child is at the wheel, and let’s be honest, you probably don’t want to be. But staggering teen car accident statistics can leave you wanting to take away your kid’s keys or question their every move.
CNN recently released an online article with the daunting title, “Parents, beware: These are the 100 deadliest days for teens”. The article discusses the increase of teen car accidents from Memorial Day to Labor Day. With more time on their hands, teens are on the road more and, in some cases, not always making the best decisions. Here are some driving tips for your teen to stay safe on the road this summer. Print them out and post them or let them guide you in a discussion about safe driving.
Covering the Basics
First, there are the basics: Buckle up, use turn signals, and turn on your lights when your wipers are on. Make sure you’re still doing all those things from Driver’s Ed. They help you communicate your actions and keep you safe. If you have an intermediate driver’s license, make sure to follow your curfews. Driving is a privilege—and one you probably don’t want to lose.
Teen Summer Driving Tips
Get directions beforehand. Yes, your phone has GPS, however frequently checking it takes your eyes off the road. Before heading out, look up where you are going and read through the directions. You can still use the GPS, but having already seen where you’ll be turning should make checking it less necessary. If you need to recalibrate or get different directions, pull over somewhere safe rather than trying to drive and type.
Don’t drive with too many friends in the car. It may be difficult to believe, but passengers are a bigger distraction to drivers than cellphones. While cell phones may capture a driver’s attention for a few seconds (which is still dangerous), passengers are present and chatty the whole time a driver should be focusing on the road. Set limits on who can ride in the car and when. And don’t be afraid to tell your friends to pipe down so you can drive.
Avoid driving after dark when possible. Nighttime driving is harder than driving during the day. Not only is there less visibility, but drivers can’t see as well. Peripheral vision is compromised, as well as depth perception. Plus there’s a higher chance of impaired drivers and fatigue. Avoid driving unknown routes at night and if you have to drive at night, stick to places you know.
Don’t Drink. Drinking isn’t legal in Florida until you turn 21, however, plenty of kids experiment with a bit of alcohol, especially during summer parties. Just because friends are doing it, doesn’t mean you should. Drinking isn’t worth losing your license or your life. If you see a friend drinking and then attempt to drive, take away their keys. Also, never get in a car with a drunk driver. Call your parents for a ride, regardless of the hour. There is no safe amount of alcohol to drink before driving.
Know what to do in case of an accident. If you’re in an accident, the first thing you should do is call 911 if anyone is injured. Call the police and assess the scene if no one is injured. Feel free to snap some photos with your phone. It’s also a good idea to call your parents. Make sure to get the other driver’s information, such as their name, address, phone number, license plate number, and their insurance carrier. If you are injured, it is generally advised that you seek medical care. If you’re not injured, discuss filing an insurance claim with your parents.
Was Your Teen Involved in a Car Accident?
While teen car accidents may be on the rise this summer, that doesn’t necessarily mean the accidents are caused by teens. If your teenager is involved in a car accident that wasn’t their fault and suffered serious injury, consulting with a Tampa personal injury lawyer can help you better understand your legal options.
A skilled Tampa personal injury lawyer can investigate the accident and help determine what the next steps are.
Teen drivers get a lot of guff, but just because they’ve been involved in a car accident doesn’t mean it’s their fault. If your son or daughter has been injured in an automobile accident, speak with a Tampa personal injury lawyer today.