All those hours you spent teaching your kid to drive plus a little Driver's Ed has helped give your kid confidence when it comes to driving and with the dreaded parallel parking on the exam. But before your child gets behind the wheel, buckles up and turns the key- here are a few tips:
1. Seat-belt, Seat-belt, Seat-belt!
The 3 point seat-belt was invented by Nils Bohlin a Volvo safety engineer in 1959. It was such an important invention that Volvo opened up the patent so any car manufacturer could use it. Estimates are that the three-point seat-belt has saved over 1 million lives during the past 50 years. U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that the belts reduce the risk of deaths in a car crash by 45 percent.
So please make sure that it is a REQUIREMENT that your teen driver wear a seat-belt whenever in any car.
2. Talk with Your Kid
Please let them know the enormous responsibility of driving, and the importance to drive safely. Statistics don't lie, in the US each year a third of teen deaths are caused by motor vehicle accidents.
Many parents will set ground rules that impose common sense limits like:
- Time of Day & Restricting the number of passengers
- Distance or type of road (around town vs. on highway)
- Driving only to and from School or Work
Here are some helpful resources for parents of teen drivers.:
Children's Hospital of Pennsylvania Resource (Excellent!)
Parent Teen Driving Agreement
3. Shop Around
Prior to your son or daughter getting their license it's a good idea to call your insurance agent and ask their advice. Local Trusted Choice Agents know how important it is to find the right insurer for a family with teen drivers- and they probably already know the insurers that offer the best deal for teens in your area.
Make sure you take advantage of all the discounts that are available, like:
- Good Student (insurers offer preferred rates for student drivers with B or Better GPA)
- Driver's Education
- Airbags and Anti-Theft
- Package Discount with Home Insurance
- AAA or auto club membership
- Distant student discounts for college kids who are away at school without a car
4. Consider Making Changes to your policy- to reduce the increase of adding a teen driver many families will consider increasing deductibles on newer cars, and perhaps removing collision from older vehicles. But prior to doing this please make sure you have the budget to absorb a potential increase in deductible or total loss.
5. Plug-In Devices
Mom and Dad may not like Big Brother watching their driving, but it's a great learning tool for young drivers. Several insurance companies offer a device that will monitor a driver's speed, time of day, and risky driving. Insurers usually offer a discount for participating in a program that monitors driving patterns and provides feedback to the driver on how to drive more safely.
Two great monitoring programs are the Progressive SnapShot the SafeCo Right Track.
6. No Phone Use
On the road each day it is easy to spot distracted drivers of ALL AGES. Some states like Massachusetts BAN the use of cell phone for teen drivers. One less worry for Mom and Dad is the requirement that kids do not use their phone at ALL when they are behind the wheel. If parents believe their kids will not comply check out some of the downloadable apps that you can use to ensure no phone use while driving.
Apps that Make Driving Safer
Good luck Mom and Dad, if you would like some help making sure you get the best car insurance rates for your family please give us a call at 1-888-882-2909.