Teens are at increased risk for involvement in a serious auto accident compared to other age groups, whether they are behind the wheel or riding alongside a friend. In fact, the National Safety Council reports that more than half of adolescents will experience a car crash before high school graduation.
When your teen gets his or her driver’s license, make sure he or she stays safe on the road with these three critical tips.
Abide by license laws
California residents can start driving at age 16 if they have completed driver training and education, had a permit for at least six months and complete 50 hours of supervised driving instruction. However, drivers younger than 18 are subject to the following license restrictions may not transport passengers younger than 20 without a parent, guardian or person age 25 or older who holds a California driver’s license. They also may not drive between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. These restrictions strive to remove factors such as teen passengers and late-night driving that often cause auto accidents among adolescents.
Wear a seat belt
More than half of auto accident fatalities among teens occur when the person was not wearing a seat belt. Despite this sobering fact, drivers and passengers in this age group ride unbuckled more often than any other demographic. Remind your teen frequently that he or she should always wear a seat belt.
Avoid driving distractions
Texting or otherwise using a smartphone behind the wheel contributes to a significant number of accidents involving teen drivers. Make sure your teen knows how dangerous it is to glance away from the road for any amount of time. This also goes for eating, talking to friends and any other actions that take his or her focus away from driving.
Parents can help their new drivers avoid serious auto accident injury by emphasizing these safety measures. Set a good example for teens by sticking to safe driving practices when you are behind the wheel.