Your children grow up before you know it. Yesterday you were changing their diapers, and now they are ready to get their driver’s license. Whether you’re ready for it or not, it’s happening. Driving can be scary, and it’s normal for you to be worried about your babies.
There are roughly 6 million car accidents across America every year. This number may be startling, but there is some good news. Vehicle related deaths have decreased 51% for teens ages 15 to 19 since 1999, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Unfortunately, motor vehicle fatalities are still the leading cause of death among teenagers. There are several reasons for these deaths, and they usually have to do with a lack of safety.
As a parent, you want to make sure that you are teaching your children the best skills possible in general, but especially when it comes to safe driving. Here are some helpful tips to get you through the beginning stages of your teenager learning to drive.
Safe Driving Courses
Even if your teen doesn’t think they need it, taking a safe driving course can be extremely helpful. The more practice your teen gets behind the wheel, the better. Inexperience is a huge factor in many teen motor vehicle accidents. Driver safety courses can be taken online or in person and usually take anywhere from six to 12 hours.
Implement Your Own Rules
Most states and cities have their own laws and regulations for teenage drivers, including how late they can be out and how many passengers are allowed in the car. As a parent, you may want to come up with your own rules. Rules like not driving in bad weather or darkness, or even a distance limit, can help ease your mind as well as keep your teen safe.
It’s All In the Method
Your teaching method can make all the difference in the world when it comes to your teen’s driving skills and habits. Although it may feel like a natural reaction to yell and freak out when they make a mistake, this can be damaging. Try to keep calm and take advantage of the teachable moments instead of scolding your young driver.
These tips don’t have to stop once your teen has their driver’s license. The road can be a scary place, especially for new drivers. Don’t panic and certainly don’t try to keep your teen off the road completely. Make sure they are well equipped with the skills to keep them safe.