To your teen, getting their license is a rite of passage that brings freedom and fun. For you, it’s a different story. 58% of parents say they’re afraid of their teen driving alone. You don’t want to smother their sense of independence, but you likely have a few safety concerns—and it’s your job to manage them into a safe, experienced driver. What should you do?
We’ve rounded up some expert tips to help you keep your teen driver safe.
1: Role-play dangerous situations
With less experience, teens are less likely than older drivers to recognize dangerous situations and behavior that lead to distracted driving. Studies indicate, for example, that one-third of high-school-aged drivers will text while at the wheel.
If you can practice hypothetical scenarios with your teen before these dangers occur, you can help them to prioritize safety.
For example: “Your best friend just texted you on the freeway. What do you do?”
To promote smarter driving with friends in the car, try: “Your friend is loud and distracting in the backseat. What do you tell them?”
For extra effectiveness, rehearse these situations with your teen in the car while they’re driving to make them feel like real-life situations.
2: Coach them to go above and beyond
The early days of driving are daunting, to say the least. In their first year of driving, one in five 16-year-old drivers will have an accident. The crash rate per mile driven is about 1.5 times as high for 16-year-olds as it is for 18–19-year-olds.
The solution: practice. It’s essential for your teen to clock more time on the road—far more than the required hours—to level up their experience.
The goal is to create an expert teen driver, faster. As their mileage increases, so will your confidence.
3: Sign a parent-teen driving contract
37% of parents with teen drivers say that their own driving instructions have a significant influence on their kid’s safety while behind the wheel.
You can take it a step further by writing your road rules into an agreement that will give your teen an ever-present reminder of what’s important.
If you’re not sure where to start, check out the CDC’s Parent-Teen Driving Agreement.
It includes five essential promises on responsible driving, a schedule of rules and restrictions and a customizable penalties section for violations.
Your teen will enjoy the part where you—the parent—pledge to drive safely yourself and be an excellent role model.
4: Use the latest technology to ease your mind
Still losing sleep? Our Connected Car solution can calm your mind—and keep you one step ahead of potential emergencies.
Protect your car and your loved ones everywhere they go. With real-time alerts from your app, Connected Car makes it easier to know that your teen is following the rules.
You’ll get alerts on speeding, sudden acceleration and hard braking, plus maintenance alerts that give you teaching opportunities around how to keep a vehicle healthy. You can even dip into its location tracking feature to keep your teen honest: were they really at the library after school, or at a friend’s house instead?
With open lines of communication and the latest technology at your side, we hope you’ll feel calmer as you prepare your teen to navigate the open road.