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Staying Safe during Prom and Graduation Season

Keeping Teen Drivers Safe during this Exciting Time

May and June are exciting months for many young adults – this is around the time when they will be attending graduation and prom as well as celebrating the end of another school year. Unfortunately, this time of year can also bring tragic moments – prom and graduation season sees a significant spike in the number of distracted driving accidents among teens. Although this is a time of defining moments for teens, it is also important that they continue to practice safe driving behavior while on the road.

Tips to Keep Young Drivers Safe during Prom and Graduation Season

Reminding teens of safe driving habits during any time of the year is always important but it is also important to remind them of these habits during prom and graduation season. This time of year sees more teens out driving with friends which can cause distracted driving. Aside from reminding teens to follow safety precautions, make sure to take a firm stand on drinking and driving as well as cell phone use– these additional reminders help teens keep safety in mind while enjoying their special moments.

Anticipate Special Circumstances

Proms and graduations usually have a number of other events tied in with them, such as dinner dates or after parties. Make sure to discuss with your teen what events will be going on during those times and gain an idea of where your teen will be driving to and from and who will be riding along with them. Once the itinerary has been established, make sure to express and set expectations of behavior for the evening or day, especially revolving around driver safety.

There are a few specific things that parents should discuss with their teens before the big day. Some of these items include appropriate curfew, peer pressure, and how to minimize or eliminate distracted driving. Make sure to discuss with your teen how to handle difficult situations such as being asked to partake in alcohol consumption or other risky behavior. Also, consider offering a “no questions asked” ride home if the teen does need one during the event.

Discussing some of these safety tips with teens can remind them of the dangers impaired and distracted driving regardless of the occasion. Set expectations for these events and discuss what consequences will be given if those expectations are not met. Remind teens to put cell phones away, always wear their seat belts, and to never drink and drive no matter the situation. Having this discussion with your teen can make prom and graduations season the exciting time is it intended to be.

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*Photo Courtesy of Salt of the Earth via Creative Commons License