Parental fears spike the moment their child becomes a licensed driver. First, parents fear the extra cost of another car and driver on their auto insurance policies. Soon, parents fear for the safety of their young driver, and understandably so—according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, teens die more from driving-related accidents than from any other cause. Take steps to protect your young drivers with these smart rules from Tom's Ford.
Zero tolerance for tickets
Teens often fail to understand the significance of a ticket. Parents should teach them that tickets are more than a simple fine. Parents who add their teen driver to their existing policies have already seen their insurance bill go through the roof. A young driver with a ticket could make insurance unaffordable, jeopardizing the survival of the entire family.
Watch out the first month
A teen-safety study published by the AAA Foundation shows that young drivers have a greater chance of wrecking their cars during their first month of unsupervised driving than during their entire first year on the road. Smart rules for teens will limit teen driving time and distance during the first month of their driving experience.
Restrict driving by time of day
Smart rules for teen safety will keep teen drivers off the road between the hours of midnight and 6 AM. IIHS data show this period as the most deadly based on the percentage of drivers killed on the road: 26% of teenagers’ automotive fatalities occurred during this period in 2009.
Always use a seatbelt
Many people killed while driving didn't have their seatbelts fastened. No matter the excuses not to, parents should require their teenage drivers to buckle up at all times while in any car.
Do not stop training
Parents should set smart rules that enable parents to continue training and evaluating their young drivers. Parents should revoke the driving privileges of teens who do not exercise sufficient respect for the laws of the road.
Never yield to pressure
Teens want to drive, sometimes regardless of the expense and regardless of the risk. Parents must grant driving privileges based on proven performance, not pressure. Parents willing to err on the side of safety could end up saving not only their child’s life but the lives of others as well.