It is the start of another school year, when students can be heard grumbling and parents celebrating all across our great Nation. For some teens, back to school also means the new found freedom of driving. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), teens are the largest age group reported as distracted at the time of a fatal crash. Texting is clearly a dangerous distraction and for inexperienced teen drivers, it is double trouble.
Parents can take steps to change distracted driving habits and make the roads safer for everyone by taking these steps.
1. Parents should set a good example for safe driving for their children.
2. Parents can also encourage driving safety by not calling when they know their teen is driving.
3. Parents should limit peer passengers for their newly licensed teens, a major crash risk. Two or more peer passengers more than triples the risk of a fatal crash with a teen behind the wheel.
The key to getting a teenager to change a habit or do something differently, like driving safely, is to involve them in the process. Parents should start a discussion with teens and keep an open line of communication about the dangers of distracted driving. Let’s do our homework and drive safely.