Car accidents are listed as the leading cause of death for teenagers and young adults. Statistics show that 35% of all deaths for individuals aged 15 to 20 are caused by traffic accidents. Many of these accidents could have been avoided if the driver had been paying better attention while behind the wheel. If you want to protect your child, you must educate them about the dangers of distracted driving. Activities such as texting, talking on the phone, listing to ipod, etc should never happen while driving.
The Added Danger of Inexperience
Distractions while driving are dangerous for the most experienced drivers, think of how much worse it is when you throw the inexperience of a new driver into the equation. Inexperienced drivers don’t always know how to react in certain situations. This is why comprehensive driver training is so important to new driver safety. We recommend driving with your child so you can guide them and provide safety tips and pointers. The more they practice, they better off they will be once they are driving on their own.
The No Cell Phone Rule
Since talking and texting on cell phones is a common danger for teen drivers, many parents implement the no cell phone rule. That means the teen is not permitted to use their cell phone while driving, and must turn it off before getting in or out of the car. Keeping it out of sight is also helpful in case your child is tempted to turn it on again after they have left. The glove box is a good place for keeping phones out of the way. There are also technology solutions such as Otter that disable cell phones in the car.
Other Good Safety Practices
There are other good safety practices that can help prevent accidents. Limit the number of passengers your child is permitted in the car. At first, you may want to forbid passengers all together until your teen feels more confident. A friend can be very distracting, especially when they are riding in groups. Also make sure your teen wears a seat belt at all times. In 2008, over 50% of car-related teen fatalities happened because they were not wearing their seat-belts. By setting defined rules, enrolling in teen driver training classes and modeling good behavior your teen driver will be much safer on the roads.