Teaching your teenager how to drive safely can be a stressful experience, but it’s very important. Every young driver needs education about the rules of the road and the rules of safe driving. In addition to passing written and on-the-road tests of skills, each new driver should learn about the following topics.
Logistics of Car Maintenance
Young drivers need to be taught about the basic needs of a vehicle. For example, be sure to sit down and have a discussion with your teen about the importance of keeping a car insured and what that process entails aside from the obvious payment of premiums. Before a car can travel on the public roads, it must be registered. Explain to your teen what must be done and what it costs to register a vehicle. Finally, after all the preliminaries have been addressed, demonstrate how to check a car’s oil and how to check the tires for signs of unusual wear. Additionally, walk around the car and show how to use a gauge to make sure that pressure is at the proper level in every tire.
How Car Accidents Happen
Distracted driving is one of the most frequent causes of car accidents. Every parent should have a serious, factual discussion with teen drivers about the importance of paying attention to the road at all times. Smartphones and other devices are a common distraction among teen drivers, so make sure your child understands the importance of pulling over before using their phone. Paying attention makes it easier to practice defensive driving while behind the wheel. You should also make sure that your teen knows how to check that all safety features of the car are in good operating order.
How to Navigate Speed and Lane Changes
What many young drivers fail to realize, primarily because they just don’t have experience behind the wheel, is that many accidents are caused by unannounced lane changes and excessive speed. Speed has another bad effect: high-speed accidents tend to have more serious outcomes in terms of fatalities, severe injuries and damage to vehicles.
How to Handle Severe Weather
For many young drivers, their first experience with an accident, whether it’s their fault of the fault of someone else, takes place in severe weather conditions. It’s wise to impress upon youngsters that roads become very slippery even after a few drops of rain. It’s also a fact that safely steering a car can become nearly impossible in high winds. Teach your teen to pull over to a safe place and wait out inclement weather.
How to Change a Tire
Consider spending a few hours teaching your teen driver how to properly change a car tire. This can be a messy endeavor, but it’s worth the time for you and for your child. If the teen ever suffers a flat tire while on the road, you can rest assured that they know what to do. Your child will thank you for the lesson in due time.
Teens have a golden opportunity to build good habits early in their driving careers. It’s the duty of parents to instill many of these habits and to educate kids about the realities of driving on the open road.