It can be nerve wracking for any parent when their children start driving, but some discussions about driving safety can help set your mind at ease and ensure that your child is driving as safely as possible. As kids head back to school, there will be more students on the road than ever, so making sure they are following some basic safety rules can help them all get to their destinations safely.
One of the first things you should talk to your teen about when it comes to driving is distractions. Teens today are incredibly connected; with smartphones they can text and use social media from anywhere, and they are constantly being bombarded with alerts on their phone. It is important to make sure they realize how dangerous texting and driving can be. Just a few seconds with their eyes off the road can be catastrophic, so reading or typing should be reserved for when the vehicle is at a full stop. No text is worth a life.
As Macomb County heads back to school, many teens may carpool to get to school, work, sports, and other destinations. The distractions of having friends in the car can at times be just as dangerous as texting. Make sure your teens know that there can be no horseplay in the vehicle, whether they are driving or a passenger.
Not all dangers are inside the vehicle. Inclement weather, be it heavy rain or winter weather, can cause roads to become more treacherous. Every driver should know to never drive through water if the road is not visible — the ‘puddle’ could be deeper than it appears and could cause damage to your vehicle, or could even sweep the car away and cause a crash. Teens should drive carefully in the rain and always be sure to use their headlights and keep their windshield wipers in good condition to ensure the best visibility possible. When it comes to driving in winter weather, snow tires are always a good investment if your teen will be doing much driving in the winter, and make sure they know to never drive in weather that makes them nervous or uncomfortable — those instincts are important and should never be ignored.
Another way our teens can stay safe is by never driving impaired. It seems like such a common sense statement, but even if you think your teen would never drink or do drugs, it never hurts to have a simple conversation about it. It’s also important to note that drinking and drugs are not the only things that can impair a driver’s reaction time – being too tired is just as dangerous. It is much safer to pull over in a well-lighted area for a quick nap than it is to drive exhausted, and making sure your teen knows this could save their life.
These are all great tips to keep in mind when you are talking to your student about safe driving, but remember that they will not always be the one behind the wheel. Make sure your child knows that making sure they are riding safely is also important. They should never distract a driver, and if they feel their friend who is driving is impaired, they should never hesitate to speak up and get out of the car. Much better to call for a ride than to end up in an accident thanks to a sleepy or drunk driver!
Here at Heidebreicht, we want everyone in Michigan to drive as safely as possible so everyone can get where they are going. That’s why we sell Chevrolets with the top safety ratings! Whether you are from Sterling Heights or Warren, we have the perfect cars for the student in your life.