How Open Communication Can Help Keep Teens Stay Safe on the Road
Statistics revolving around teen driving are shocking – nearly 3,000 young lives are taken every year in fatal teen car accidents. Because of this, it is important to communicate with young drivers about dangerous situations and how to stay safe behind the wheel. Leading experts believe that parents play a huge role in preventing teen car accidents simply by communicating with teens about driver safety.
Share the Statistics with Teens
An easy way to effectively communicate safe driving is showing teens the facts. Share the harsh statistics about the dangers of distracted driving and driving under the influence. Are teen drivers aware that the risk of a fatal crash more than doubles when there is another teen passenger in the vehicle? Or that young drivers are four times more likely to be involved in a fatal accident than older drivers? These statistics are not meant to scare teenagers into not driving – they are meant to clearly communicate the real dangers that young drivers face on the road.
Be Involved with Teen’s Driving
Studies have shown that parents who are involved with their teen’s driving have young drivers who are less likely to engage in risky behavior behind the wheel. There are many ways that parents can get involved and stay involved with their teens – one thing to do is practice driving often. The more time teens have behind the wheel with a responsible adult, the more comfortable and safer they will drive when on the road alone.
Another great way to be involved with a teen’s driving either before or after they have their license is to lead by example. When riding in the car with teens, it is important to model good driving behavior such as always wearing a seatbelt, obeying the speed limit and traffic signs and refraining from talking or text messaging. If teens see parents acting responsibly behind the wheel, they are likely to do the same.
Teen safety is a big concern when it comes to driving. The statistics show that more and more fatal car accidents are occurring every year involving young drivers. Communication is key to keeping teens safe on the road– make sure to stress to teens the dangers of distracted driving and driving under the influence. Parents have the greatest influence over their children – let’s make them into safe drivers!
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*Photo Courtesy of USACE Europe District via Creative Commons License