Keeping Your Teen Safe Behind the Wheel

Every parent knows that the day your child gets a license, things change. It’s no longer your driving skills keeping your children safe, it’s theirs. Not only do they become responsible for their own life on the road, but they become accountable for the safety of others as well, including the children of other equally nervous parents. The day your teenager gets a license is one of the major turning points in life, when the lessons about responsibility that you taught them are tested in the real world.

Studies have shown that teenagers whose parents initially set rules and restrictions regarding driving have fewer accidents and less traffic tickets than those without restrictions. According to Sue Hubbard, M.D., in her article “Keep Teens Safe Behind the Wheel” (LATimes.com, 2010), “Anything that may prevent teenage car accidents and injury is something we should all be aware of.”

Hubbard discusses the concept and benefits of graduated driver’s licenses (GDL), a program that gradually phases in driving privileges for new teen drivers, which  is now in effect in 49 states. Hubbard also stresses the importance of the role of the parent, emphasizing the importance of being knowledgeable about driving laws and enforcing them on their children. “Things like drinking and driving, number of passengers in their car, banning cell phone use and texting while driving, and limiting driving after dark all help reduce accidents and death,” she says.

To read more about what Dr. Hubbard has to say regarding a parent’s role in safe teen driving click here.

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