Summer vacation is winding down and before you know it your kids will be back to school. For some this means your “little ones” are now driving themselves to and from school. Here at KW a lot of cars that come through our shop are damaged at the control of young drivers, and we want to help in keeping people and their vehicles safe. Below are a few words of advice before you pass the torch, AKA keys, to your teens.
LET THEM DRIVE
A big problem with inexperienced teen drivers is that parents tend to tell their kids how to drive without letting them get behind the wheel. The more experience teens can get being on the road, the better. Driving often will provide new drivers with the confidence they need to make smart decisions and ultimately stay safe.
It’s easy to nitpick at the little things teen drivers do wrong. We suggest that parents instead recognize and applaud the big stuff. The constant positive reinforcement will lead to good habits, and good habits will help to make safer drivers.
We all know that using your cellphone while driving is an absolute no-no. Distracted drivers are amongst the greatest causes of fatal car accidents, especially among teens. This goes for parents in the passenger seat, too. The only way you’ll be able to properly observe your teen driver is to have both eyes on them. Your phone can wait.
SET A GOOD EXAMPLE
According to a study WBUR, parents aren’t always following the same rules they require of their teens – especially when it comes to talking on phones, using apps while driving and speeding. As parents, we should live by the golden rule “Do As I Say, But More Importantly, Do As I Do.” Rules of the road apply to all, and thereby should be accepted and followed by ALL drivers. Parents should maintain the same standards for themselves if they expect their teen drivers to do the same. Keep in mind that, more often than not, teens will follow the example shown to them and will call you out on your hypocrisy if they see that you are not following your own rules of the road. So do your teen and the rest of us a favor and practice what you preach when you’re behind the wheel!
By teaching your teen driver good habits, you can be confident in knowing that your vehicle is in safe hands. In the unfortunate event that they hop a curb or love tap a car while parking, KW will be here to get you back on the road.