No one knows anxiety like a parent whose teenager has just started driving alone. However, you don’t have to resign yourself to constant worry and GPS checking. By setting your teen up for success and encouraging safe driving habits, you can give yourself a little peace of mind while helping your teenager learn the skills that they need to become independent.
At Weaver Tidmore LLC, we know accidents happen and we’re here to help when they do. For help with your personal injury case, call Weaver Tidmore LLC at 205-980-6065.
Set Up an Insurance Meeting
Insurance agents know well the risks of teenage driving, and they are often good at communicating these risks to teenagers in a frank and practical way. Have your insurance agent talk to your teenager about accidents they’ve investigated involving teen drivers, lay out the financial costs of an accident, and explain how unsafe driving will impact their insurance rates and finances in the future. While teens may not grasp the danger of an accident, since teenagers are known to feel invincible, they may think twice if they know they will be on the hook for a high deductible if they cause an accident.
Make Sure You’re a Good Example
Kids learn best through what they experience, not what they are told. If you tell them to drive safely but spend every drive applying makeup and replying to text messages, you’re telling them that it’s okay to skirt the rules as long as you don’t actually get in an accident. Make sure the example you’re setting lines up with what you actually want them to learn from you.
Use Technology to Your Benefit
Technology is a major distraction for new drivers, especially for teens who like to stay connected at all times. But there’s also an upside to technology. You can use it to learn more about your teen’s driving habits, make sure they aren’t going places they shouldn’t be, and even help them develop safe driving skills.
Many insurance companies have a plan feature that lets you track speed, braking habits, and more. Note, though, that this information is also used to determine how much your plan costs, so it may not be a good option if your teen is prone to risky behavior. There are non-insurance options as well. Some text you if the car exceeds a certain speed, goes outside set parameters, or otherwise engages in unexpected behavior.
You can also help your teenager lay the groundwork for safe driving by setting up limits on their phone. Some phones have a feature that automatically puts them into “do not disturb” mode when they are in a car, and others lock access to everything but emergency calls when they are moving at a certain speed.
Don’t Rely Too Much on Your Teen for Assistance
A lot of parents find themselves struggling to enforce the rules when their teenager is driving unsafely or consistently pushing the limits. This is because they see a driving teen as a way to get more done.
If you rely on your new driver to take younger kids to school every day, run younger kids to activities, or pick up groceries, you are at a serious disadvantage if they break the rules and you are forced to take away their car. Some parents in this situation turn a blind eye to the teen’s behavior, knowing that they can’t afford to find a new way to get younger kids to school or activities.
While you can ask teens to handle tasks like school drop-off, do not make them your only option. You need the freedom to enforce rules when you need to. Make sure that you have alternative solutions if your teen is suddenly unable to drive.
Having a teen driver is challenging, but it is also a great chance to bond with your child, help them prepare for adulthood, and set clear expectations. The work you put in now will benefit your new driver for the rest of their life.
Turn to Weaver Tidmore LLC for Help with Your Personal Injury Claim
Have you been involved in a car accident that wasn’t your fault? We’ve been there and we know how stressful it can be. Instead of fighting for compensation on your own, let our team help. Set up a consultation with Weaver Tidmore LLC now by calling us at 205-980-6065 or contacting us .