3 Steps to Keeping Your Driving Teen Safer

Sunday, October 18, 2020, kicked off this year’s National Teen Driver Safety Week hosted by Parachute. The aim of this year’s campaign focuses on speeding, impaired driving, and the dangers of railway tracks for your driving teen. You might be asking yourself, “so what can I do as a parent or guardian to help alleviate these risks from my teen driver”? First, bringing awareness to the topics is essential, next your teen needs to have the skills and education to make the correct decision while in the driver’s seat, and last, your teen requires a good example to follow.

Driving Teen Statistics

First, let’s take a look at some of the statistics to better understand the severity of the issues of this year’s campaign. Click on the following cards to learn some of the statistics:

SPEEDING

Parachute, 2020

"Speeding is a factor in one-third of teen driver deaths in Canada"
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IMPAIRED DRIVING

CDC, 2020

"In the 2017 national Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 16.5% of high school students had ridden with a driver who had been drinking alcohol within the previous month. Among students who drove, 5.5% drove when they had been drinking alcohol during the 30 days before the survey."
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RAILWAY CROSSINGS

CBC News, 2020

"Manitoba drivers are being reminded to be extra cautious when crossing rail lines after five people died in crashes with trains in the last five weeks."
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These numbers only represent a portion of the statistics, and believe me when I say…they are scary. As parents and guardians, we want to do everything we can to keep our teens safe. Following the steps below can help reduce your teen’s risk.

Teach Awareness

The main issue surrounding teen driver safety is that many teens are unaware of how quickly a fatality can occur, especially when speeding and substances are involved. If you have not already done so (or maybe you have and your teen could use a refresher), go over the statistics of teen injury and fatality from collisions. The more information they know about the risks, the more likely they will think before making a possibly life-changing decision while behind the wheel. Below are some helpful links to use as resources:

"Over" Educate & Practice Skills

When possible, it is important to enroll your teen in a driver’s training program before they begin to drive independently. Driver’s education programs create a solid foundation for your teen’s driving. It is also just as important for you as a parent or guardian to practice the skills that your teen learns in driver’s ed. Practicing with your teen will allow them to make better decisions quickly when they begin to drive independently. All states require that your teen has a certain amount of practice hours…try to exceed the expectation.  Drive with your teen in different conditions and new areas!

Not sure where to start with practicing your teen’s driving skills? Visit www.coachingnewdrivers.com to learn more about our program for parents and teens!

Be a Good Example

I cannot stress this step enough! You, as a parent or guardian, need to ensure that you are driving safely! Your teen will not understand the high risk they are faced with if they see you partaking in dangerous behaviors such as driving under the influence or speeding. Show them exactly what it means to drive safely and how to avoid unnecessary risks.

At Coaching New Drivers, our number one concern is road safety for your teens. Together let’s work to bring awareness to the issue, address the issue through skill training and education, and lead by example!

References

A&E. (2019, May 22). Live PD: A Teen with a Need for Speed. [Video]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNeua1rjxH4

CBC News. (2020, September 20). Safety concerns raised after 5 Manitobans die in collisions at railway crossings in 5 weeks. Retrieved from https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/cn-rail-train-safety-fatalities-manitoba-portage-collisions-rail-crossings-1.5731359

CDC. (2020). Teen Drivers: Get the Facts. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/motorvehiclesafety/teen_drivers/teendrivers_factsheet.html

Parachute. (2020, September 9). National Teen Driver Safety Week. Retrieved from https://parachute.ca/en/program/national-teen-driver-safety-week/

Poor Judgement. (2017, June 20). Train Crash Compilation Part 1. [Video]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GduFDV_oY2s

Coach Bill

Coach Bill

Bill is the Managing Partner of Coaching New Drivers and has a vast background in driver education. Bill is passionate about technology-based driver assessment and has gained extensive knowledge and experience through lecturing on driving topics across North America, Australia, and Asia. Bill is a parent to two teens who he has also successfully coached during the Learner’s permit stage.

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