Learning to drive is a major milestone in a teenager’s life. Getting a driver’s license is like a rite of passage into adulthood, but it should not be the end of “learning to drive.” Did you know that teen drivers’ inexperience and immaturity are the main reasons why young drivers are involved in more auto accidents than any other drivers? The main reasons are:
- distractions – cell phones, texting, loud music.
- peer pressure – too many passengers, drinking and driving, speeding, and not wearing a seatbelt.
- less experience – more likely to make simple errors in judgment that may lead to an accident, such as over-correcting.
Never assume that your teen is ready to get behind the wheel without you just because they passed the driving test and got a license. Your teen may seem to be in control behind the wheel, but a sudden change in conditions can be dangerous.
Parents are so busy these days that they often choose convenience over safety. They should pay full attention to their teens’ skills and abilities and only after careful consideration hand over the keys. It is the responsibility of the parent to make sure their teen is ready to drive. How many times have you heard “I can’t wait for my kid to drive so I have more time for myself”? Many times parents view their teen getting a drivers license as freedom for themselves – freedom from chauffeuring their child and freedom from being inconvenienced. In reality, that thought process means freedom from responsibility. Did you know that more teens die in an auto accident than those killed by drugs and crime combined? Would you give your child a loaded gun? So why toss them the keys when they are not ready to drive? Driving is not a right, it is a privilege – a special right one earns.
It is time to educate our teens with more supervised hands-on training including accident avoidance skills and skills to necessary to respond to dangerous driving situations. This includes understanding the importance of adhering to the speed limit, avoiding distractions while driving, and how to respond to situations on the road without panicking. Drivers’ education is critical if we are to protect our young drivers, passengers, and others who share the same roadways. It is equally important that parents set some rules for their teen driver.
- Limit the number of passengers allowed in the car at least for the first six months, The less passengers, the less distractions
- Impose a no cell phone and no texting rule while driving
- Require that the car is not started until the driver and all passengers are wearing seat belts
- Set a limit on where your teen can drive
- Discuss the ramifications of drinking while driving
Unfortunately, a parent has no way of knowing if their teen will always follow these rules once they leave the house. Nor can they control the actions of other drivers. Having proper insurance coverage is another way to protect your teen. Talk with your insurance agent about various options and be aware of your state’s requirements.
Lawsuit Financial encourages everyone to help our young drivers become conscientious and safe drivers. It is important to practice what we preach. Don’t tell your teen not to talk on the cell phone and drive, but then turn around and do it yourself. We all must be conscientious of the examples we set. Lawsuit Financial understands that even the most responsible driver may find themselves in an auto accident. If you or a loved one is seriously injured in an automobile accident at no fault of your own, you may be able to recover damages for medical bills, loss wages, and pain and suffering. It is important to contact an attorney who specializes in these types of cases. Worried about paying bills and meeting other financial obligations? Lawsuit funding is a valuable service that offers a better solution than settling your valuable personal injury lawsuit for less than it is worth.
Attorney, certified civil mediator, and award-winning author of the Zachary Blake Betrayal Series—Mark Bello is also the CEO of Lawsuit Financial and the country’s leading expert in providing non-recourse lawsuit funding to plaintiffs involved in pending litigation. He is also a member of the State Bar of Michigan, a sustaining member of the Michigan Association for Justice, and a member of the American Association for Justice.