|Posted on December 19, 2014 at 3:45 AM|
In American culture, going through driver’s education is one of the major milestones in a young adult’s or teenager’s life. If you are the parent to such an individual, the prospect of them going for such training might be a bittersweet thing, and rightly so.
On one hand, the fact that they are learning to drive is just one of the things that shows you that they are developing and growing, something that most parents would be proud of. However, the statistics might also put some fear into you as the teenager’s parent. It has been shown that motor vehicle accidents account for a large proportion of teen deaths and injuries. This might make you apprehensive about letting them learn how to drive. However, there are a few things that you can do to reduce this risk. Some of these include:
Talk about it
It might not seem like much, but simply talking about driving safety with your child can do a lot to reduce the chances of them engaging in risky activity as a driver. When you develop an open attitude, they are more likely to share some of the issues they have with driving, and this will help you come up with solutions to them. For instance, if they feel unconfident when behind the wheel, they might end up making mistakes that could result in an accident.
If they disclose this to you, you can then try to find ways of reducing their fear, and this in turn will make them much safer drivers. As a parent, you should also try to avoid having the notion that the driving school will handle all of such issues. While it is true that they are responsible for most of the training, you still have a role to play in making your teenage child a much safer driver, and this is one of the ways of doing it.
Set down a few regulations
When a teenager goes for driving school and even passes the test, it does not mean that they have become a fully-fledged driver. As a parent, you should realize that your child will still need a few months or even years of experience in a controlled environment so as to become safe drivers. In order to help them do this, you will need to come up with a few regulations that govern their driving. Some of these include stopping them from driving the car when drunk, and also making sure that they stay within specified geographical bounds and times when driving. For instance, since it is know that driving at night is hazardous, you might want to restrict them from doing so.
In addition to keeping the child safe, there are other benefits to having such restrictions. These include the fact that you may end up finding it cheaper to pay insurance for the car especially if you prove that you enforce such restrictions. It’s important to note that when setting up such restrictions, you need to be willing to enforce them.
Prepare them for peer pressure
When your child starts taking driver’s ed lessons, they are likely to be at a point in life when they will be very susceptible to peer pressure. Their peers might encourage them to drink and drive, and may even influence them to drive at dangerous times such as when it’s raining heavily or late in the night. The best way to avoid this would be to prepare your child for such an occurrence. It might not completely eliminate the chances of them being influenced, but if you do it correctly you will drastically reduce them.
Choose a good driving school
Most people think that learning how to drive is a straightforward process, and that there is little difference between the different training institutions out there. However, the truth of the matter is that there are glaring differences between them. High quality institutions tend to provide more holistic training, and this means that your child will turn out to be a much better driver overall if you enroll them to such courses. Even if they are slightly more expensive than the rest, the fact that your child will turn out to be a very good driver means that they provide very good value for money, making them worth it.
Provide them with safe cars
There are some families that have more than one car that can be used by the teenager when they are learning how to drive. In such cases, you should choose one that is safest for them. It is important to note that this does not equate to the slowest, and that very slow cars can actually be dangerous for them. You should instead focus on the safety features of the cars, such as the presence of cruise control or collision mitigation systems. The car that has all these features should be the one used for training.