7 Safety Tips for Teenage Drivers

by AutoInsuranceQuotes.org Staff Writer on November 27, 2012

Congratulations on getting your driver’s license! You’re now able to drive to and from school or a job, help out your family with important errands, and get out on your own without having to depend on someone else for a ride. But teenage drivers need to be especially careful during their first couple years on the road. Statistics show that the chance of an automobile accident is greater among 16- to 19-year olds than any other age group. Thankfully, there are several steps you can take to assure that you and other drivers on the road remain safe as you enjoy the freedom that comes with being a licensed driver. Check out the seven safety tips below.

  1. Turn off your cell phone:

    Sure, you see adults who look responsible, dressed in suits and ties, yakking about who knows what on their cell phones as they weave in and out of traffic. But the fact is, one of the leading causes of deadly accidents involving teenagers is distracted driving, which definitely includes driving while talking on a cell phone. You may not believe the statistics, but do you really want to take a chance on becoming one?

  2. Don’t text:

    Again adults, maybe even your own parents, text while driving, even though more and more states are passing laws that make it illegal to do so. We know you think it’s rude not to immediately respond to a text, but a real friend will understand that you’re like, you know, driving and can’t type while steering! If you really want to catch up on texts, pull into a McDonald’s, buy a milkshake, and sit at a table and enjoy a text break.

  3. Minimize distractions:

    In addition to talking on cell phones and texting, blasting music over the sound system, fiddling around with your GPS, and trying to have a conversation with two or three friends who are just as excited as you to be in a car are all contributors to distracted driving. Tell your buds to shut up, prepare your GPS before you pull out of your driveway, and turn the music down a notch or two. You might be surprised at how much better your drive, and how much safer you feel!

  4. Watch the speed limit:

    Along with distracted driving, speeding is a leading contributor to automobile accidents involving teenagers. Again, everyone around you might be gunning it, and your friends might make fun of you for obeying the law, but again, why be a statistic? Speeding decreases your ability to maintain safe control of your car, and will most certainly get you pulled over by the cops.

  5. Drive defensively:

    Defensive driving is a skill set you develop over time the more you drive, but right off the bat you can engage in defensive driving by simply staying alert and focused and watching to see what other people are doing on the road. Use the three to four second rule to create a safe distance between yourself and other vehicles on the road, and stay clear of drivers who are driving erratically or well above the speed limit.

  6. Turn on the headlights:

    Be sure you know when it is mandatory for you in your state to have your headlights on. Many cars come with “always-on” headlights, which when used during the daytime, increases your visibility to other drivers. Some insurance companies actually offer a discount for vehicles equipped with daytime lights.

  7. Drive a safe car:

    Be sure you’re driving a car with the latest in safety features, including anti-lock brakes and front and back air bags. Familiarize yourself with your car’s safety features so you understand exactly what each feature does. And ask your parents or whoever owns the insurance policy on the car you are driving if they’ve spoken to the insurance company about receiving a discount for driving a car with safety features.

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