Have a new driver in your family? 5 helpful hints for good driving habits for teen drivers

Article from: http://www.thehartford.com
Getting a driver’s license is an exciting time for a teenager …and a major transition for you. Even if this isn’t the first of your children to start driving, you’re sure to have mixed emotions about their newfound independence. Of course, when it comes to your child driving, safety is your primary concern. While you can’t always be in the car to help them, you can make sure you provide the insight and education they need to develop the safest possible driving habits.
Understanding that every family will have their own approach, here are some helpful hints for dealing with a new driver:
  • Set ground rules. Young drivers need boundaries. Consider setting rules for how many passengers they can have and how far they can go unsupervised. Also, establish (and enforce) consequences for when the rules are broken.
  • Limit driving at night. Statistically speaking, night is the most dangerous time for teen drivers. In fact, the crash risk for teens at night is nearly twice as high as during the day. So it’s a good idea to set a curfew.
  • Make sure they wear seat belts. Seat belts save lives. Yet teen drivers and passengers buckle up less often than adults.
  • Check in early and often. Ask your teen how they feel behind the wheel. Frequent conversations can help you identify problems early.
  • Ride along and observe. It’s the best way to evaluate your teen’s driving. Is the radio too loud? Does she wear a seat belt? Is he checking his smart phone for messages? Watch, learn and point out unsafe behavior.
For some teenagers, getting a license is the end of driver education and the start of a new era of fun. They can often be more concerned with where to go next than with how to become a better driver. It’s an important time for parents, and your job is to find the right balance between celebrating their freedom and helping them become smart, safe drivers.  Talk to you teen today about safe driving.
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