Many parents are nervous when their teenager gets his or her driver’s license. Parents have good reasons to feel that way.
Teens are high-risk drivers, but parents can play an important role in making sure teenagers have the necessary driving skills and are not practicing distracted driving behavior.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, teen drivers are the cause of a high number of fatal accidents. This is because they lack not only driving skills but also experience on the road. As a parent, one thing to do is make sure the teen follows the graduated driver licensing system, because it can cut the risk of crashes in half.
Another thing parents can do is make a list of driving rules, such as:
- No teen passengers
- No drinking and driving
- No cell phone use while driving
- Limits on nighttime driving
Have consequences if your teen driver breaks any of the rules. It also helps to accompany the teen on rides to help improve skills and experience in various conditions. These include:
- Highway driving
- Driving at night
- Driving in bad weather
The National Parent Teacher Association stresses how important it is for parents to lead by example when behind the wheel.
Texting is a big problem among teen drivers, but studies show that it is also an issue with parents and driving. Moms and dads should keep the phone out of sight and refrain from other distracting behaviors, such as eating, playing with the radio or putting on makeup, while behind the wheel.