As the parent of a teen driver, you may be wondering whether the hands on training and various precautions you have taken are going to be enough to keep your child safe when behind the wheel. Whether your child is driving to school, driving to a friend’s house, or going on a road trip, safety is of utmost concern. Car accidents are one of the leading causes of teenage death for drivers between the ages of 16 and 19. Helping your teen follow these basic safety tips for new drivers could help prevent a tragic accident.
Wear a seat belt at all times when driving. Seat belts have been proven to protect lives, particularly in the event of a serious accident.
Cell phones must be turned off when driving. There is no phone call or text message so important that it cannot wait. Taking one’s eyes off the road for even a few seconds may be all that it takes for a disaster to occur. Distracted driving is as dangerous as drunk driving, and it is simply not worth the risk.
Obey the speed limit. Close to 40% of fatal accidents involving teen drivers are the result of speeding. The chances of your teen causing an accident while speeding dramatically increases in congested traffic or on streets that are unfamiliar.
Ensure your child understands how critical it is not to get behind the wheel of a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol, or ride in a vehicle with an intoxicated driver. Pennsylvania has strict laws on drinking and driving, particularly for individuals under the age of 21. Setting up a clear set of rules and having ongoing discussions with your son or daughter about this issue could not be more important.
As the majority of car accidents caused by teen drivers occur between the hours of 9 pm and 3 am, don’t allow your child to drive during the later evening hours. Offer other solutions for events taking place later in the evening.
No matter how much your teenage child may want to drive friends around Pittsburgh, it is important to know that the risk of being in an accident increases at least three-fold when there are other young passengers in the vehicle. Driving solo for at least the first 6 months or longer after getting licensed will give your child a better opportunity to fine tune their driving skills.
As a new driver, your son or daughter needs to take the time to learn how their vehicle handles in a range of situations. Teen drivers must be extremely cautious and aware of their limits due to lack of experience. There are classes which can help improve a response time and train your child to be a defensive driver. This training has the potential for saving many lives, as a teenager behind the wheel could be the victim of another driver, whether drunk, speeding or distracted. Defensive driving skills are a must.
At McElhinny Insurance Agency, we take pride in offering affordable coverage to families with teenage drivers so there is protection in the event of an unfortunate accident. Our agents are all local to the Pittsburgh area, so we are available day or night to assist you. Having the proper insurance policy in place could save you thousands of dollars in medical expenses and provide you with the funds you will need to cover other accident-related costs. Contact a Pittsburgh insurance agent at McElhinny Insurance Agency so that we can advise you of the most affordable and comprehensive auto insurance policy and coverage for teenage drivers and the rest of your family.