Driving during the winter can be incredibly dangerous, especially for new teenage drivers.
As parents of teens, it’s important to teach them how to be safe and get themselves out of trouble on the road during a dangerous winter storm.
So how exactly can you prepare your teenage children to be safe in the best way possible during the winter? Let’s find out.
Prepare The Vehicle
The first and most important step before your teen child enters the road is to prepare their vehicle. Be sure to take the following steps which are:
1. Getting an oil change
2. Testing the battery
3. Getting tire rotations
4. Filling Up Your Engine With Gasoline
When you take these simple steps to prepare your car before getting on dangerous roads, that can prepare yourself for success in the long term.
By preparing your vehicle, it can potentially be a great lesson to teach your teenage child on basic life skills. For example, if your teen’s car needs an oil change, teaching them how to go to a proper shop or even learn how to fill up their vehicle with the right amount of gas necessary.
Educate Your Teens on Winter Driving Techniques
As stated previously, if there are dangerous winter driving conditions, it can be a great opportunity to educate your child on proper driving techniques during this time.
The first and most important driving technique is to be a defensive driver.
This principle means maintaining a safe following distance, avoiding sudden movements, focusing on making smooth turns, and not speeding.
You should also be sure to educate your teens on the dangers of not being a safe driver during the wintertime.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there have been an estimated 121,156 police-reported crashes that happened when there was snow at the time of the crash.
In addition, there were 391 fatal crashes that happened because of the snow and icy conditions.
These statistics highlight how important it is to stay safe on the roads, while also showing how important it is for your teenager to create fantastic driving habits now to set themselves up for success in the future.
Create An Emergency Kit
The next step is to prepare your teen for the unthinkable.
What if your child is in a place where he or she may be stuck with no place to go in the middle of a storm.
Well, it’s best to be over prepared if your teen child is in this situation.
Be sure to stock up on necessary items such as blankets, non-perishable items, first aid supplies, and even a flashlight if necessary.
If your teen ends up getting stuck somewhere, make sure that they have the necessary tools to be safe in the dangerous conditions of the winter.
Set Boundaries and Guidelines For Driving
An important lesson for your teenagers to learn is how to be disciplined.
You need to also set boundaries and guidelines for driving in dangerous conditions, or even late at night, which can be against the law.
For example, in the state of California, drivers who get their license before the age of 18 are not allowed to drive between the hours of 11am to 5am. If anything, these similar limitations need to be enforced on your teens, since nothing good ever happens after midnight.
And nothing good ever happens after midnight. Period.
Around 35% of all car accident fatalities happen at night, and the treacherous conditions during the winter can make that number even higher.
So be sure that your child knows how to communicate with you to let you know that they’re on their way home, even with just a simple text.
Encourage Responsible Driving Behavior
A crucial step of teaching your teenagers how to be a responsible driver during the wintertime is to encourage responsible driving behavior.
And more importantly, you are the example that you set to your children.
So if you’re taking your teenager to school, don’t go on your phone or speed excessively. Also be sure to put on your seatbelt, and never drive under the influence.
By choosing to focus on responsible behavior, that can prevent the possibility of severe car accidents that can be life-changing or deadly.
According to a trusted lawyer who focuses on personal injury in Austin, Texas, it’s important to seek legal services shortly after your teenager has been injured or hurt in a car accident.
Insurance companies will do everything they can to minimize your teens’ pain and suffering, while they focus on their profits and bottom line over their paying customers.
So, be sure to seek legal advice if this situation ever happens to you.
Make Sure Your Teens Are Safe On The Road Today
To summarize the points above, as a parent, you can ensure your teenage child is safe on the road by performing the following actions:
- Preparing the Vehicle Properly
- Educating Your Teens On Winter Driving Techniques
- Creating An Emergency Kit
- Setting Boundaries and Guidelines For Driving
- Encouraging responsible driving behavior
As a parent, when you choose to follow these steps, that can make your teen a safer driver, forcing you to be a better driver in the process.
Just remember that it is up to you to also set a positive example for your children by everything that you do.