Pennsylvania’s teens can receive a learner’s permit on their 16th birthday, followed by a full license at least a year after that. Though this lag time may make parents temporarily sigh with relief, parents must plan ways to protect their driving teens down the road. The following are some of the best ways to keep young new drivers from making costly errors, including getting into avoidable car accidents.
Texting, while not the only type of distraction for drivers, is a primary one. If you want your teenager to avoid texting, do so yourself. Turn your phone to Do Not Disturb or switch it to silent so you will not be tempted to answer texts or calls. Then, put it in the glove compartment away from reach. At the same time, insist your young driver to always do the same. By making this a habit, you can take away distractions.
Aside from turning off your technological devices, relentlessly obey the rules of the road. Rather than speeding, stay within the posted speed limits. Instead of passing a truck with inches to spare, exercise patience. You can always change your behaviors.
Although you might be tempted to hand over the car keys to your child whenever possible, opt to limit driving experiences. For instance, only allow your teen to have a lesson with you a couple times a week, rather than every day after school. At the same time, expect your teen to follow strict guidelines when they are behind the wheel. Driving should be a privilege for a beginner, and one that carries responsibility.
Rather than allowing your teen to have a heavy truck or a sports car as a first vehicle, help them choose a more sensible option. A used Corolla may not be the most exciting car for a teenager, but it is a practical vehicle with a decent safety record. If your child has their own money to spend on a used car, go along for test drive. It is helpful to also explain the higher costs of insurance for young drivers before your child purchases a vehicle.
You certainly never want to hear that your teen has been in an accident, but collisions do happen, especially in the summer months when teens are driving more often. Plus, weekend evenings are statistically the most active for teen-related car crashes. With these facts in mind, prepare your young driver for what to do after an accident. That way, if your teen does run into trouble, they will understand what to do.
Despite a parent’s careful protective measures, any teen can end up in a collision. If you or a family member is injured in a car accident, please call the Delaware County personal injury lawyers at Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews & Auslander, P.C. Contact our attorneys at 610-565-3700 or through our online form to schedule a free consultation. Located in Media and West Chester, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Delaware County, Chester County, and Montgomery County.