Teens get into many accidents, many of them preventable. Even one accident involving a minor is often a tragedy and as anyone who has tried to get a teen insured knows, teens are considered by insurers as a high accident risk. Unfortunately, teens get into accidents each day and these car crashes often result in broken bones, spinal cord injuries, burn injuries, head injuries and other serious problems. There are, luckily, many ways that you can help your teen reduce their risk of accidents:
1) Drive well yourself. Teens often pick up habits from their parents. If you drive well, take driving privileges seriously, and take steps to ensure that you keep your skills up to date, chances are good that your teen will adopt some of the same habits and attitudes. You are more of a role model than you may realize, so make sure that your driving habits are worth emulating.
2) Consider offering extra lessons. Your teen has likely taken some form of driver’s education already, but consider offering to help finance extra lessons, such as refresher lessons, defensive driving lessons or continuing lessons. Extra training from a qualified professional prepares your teen driver for all sorts of driving conditions and makes you teen more confident behind the wheel. If extra lessons can help prevent an injury or accident, it is certainly money well spent.
3) Set rules. Many parents hesitate to set rules for their teen drivers, but setting rules – such as “no passengers after dark,” “no more than one passenger at a time” or “no driving while texting” – can help save a life.
4) Get familiar with how your teen drives. Many parents miss the signs of problem habits. Make sure that you accompany your teen on drives. Does he or she take unneeded risks? Does he or she have bad habits that could be dangerous? Now is the time for additional training, before dangerous habits become permanent.
5) Reward your teen for good behaviour. If your teen drives well and displays positive, good habits – such as calling you rather than drinking and driving – reward him or her. Similarly, do not hesitate to take away driving privileges if you see signs of dangerous driving.