Avoiding DUIs: Driving Safety Tips that Parents Should Teach Their Children
When teenagers take to the road, parents are oftentimes left at home worrying about all of the potential dangers that come with driving. The relationship between one’s age and one’s behavior behind the wheel is of interest to researchers who study traffic safety. Studies by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration show that drivers aged 16 to 19 years old have higher crash and traffic violation rates than any other age group per year.
This may be a result of the fact that many teenagers are also at a greater risk for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Getting a DUI at a young age is something that no parent and teenager should go through, especially since it is entirely avoidable. Parents should do their part to teach various driving safety tips to their teenagers in order to keep everybody safer on the road.
Setting a Good Example
Many children view their parents as role models, and this extends into a child’s teenage years. This is why it is essential for parents to set a good example when driving, for teenagers will often copy what they see their parents doing in the car. To avoid DUI situations, parents should make sure that they never get behind the wheel after having an alcoholic drink in front of their children—or ever.
It is easy for parents to set a good example by using the techniques of explanation and engagement. Explain why you are doing what you do when you are in the car. For example, tell your children why you are checking your mirrors before switching lanes. By vocalizing the ways that you stay safe while driving, teenagers can hopefully develop the same techniques.
Teaching Helpful Habits
Another lesson that parents can teach their teenage drivers is to practice good habits. Remind new drivers that they need to be focused on the road 100% of the time that they are driving. This means that they should not be talking or texting on their cell phones, which can cause them to be just as impaired as a driver who has been drinking alcohol. Some states even have bans on cell phone usage to prohibit driver distractions.
A second helpful habit that teenagers should develop is to always inspect their vehicle periodically throughout the year. Teach them how to make sure that their car is in good working order and that they need to perform certain checks, like oil checks, on a regular basis. This will give young drivers the knowledge that they need to handle emergency situations with their cars, like fixing a flat tire or a dead battery.
In order to keep teenagers safe on the road, parents should impart certain driving tips and knowledge to new drivers that will help them avoid distractions and risky situations like driving under the influence.