Prevent Distracted Driving in Teens
According to the Center for Disease Control, 9 people die from distracted driving every day! It’s a growing problem, but thankfully it can be prevented. When your teen is on the road, help them understand the dangers of distracted driving and empower them with ways to combat it. While it may be tempting the check an incoming text, it could be deadly.
What is Distracted Driving?
Distracted driving isn’t just using your phone while behind the wheel. It can be a multitude of things. Distracted driving can include:
- Changing the music
- Checking the GPS
- Eating or Drinking
- Loud or disruptive friends in the car
- Taking a photo.
- Doing makeup or checking the vanity mirror
Make no mistake – It’s not just a problem for teens! Adults are guilty too. Drivers are 3 times more likely to get into a crash while being distracted by a phone, according to a study done by Virginia Tech Transportation Institute. However, younger drivers may find it difficult to tune out the sound of a buzzing phone or friends in the back seat. There are some methods to help prevent distracted driving:
Distracted Driving Prevention Techniques
Turn your phone off in the car
If your phone is off and not making any noise, it is less tempting to fiddle with. If you cannot turn off your phone completely, try turning it on silent or leaving it somewhere out of your line of vision. Keeping your phone in your bag can also help deter you from checking it while behind the wheel. If you need to check your phone, then pull over in a safe area, and then check it.
Avoid Grooming in the Car
Applying makeup or grooming yourself in the car is another common form of distracted driving. Putting lipstick on while behind the wheel could end up causing an accident. Either wait until yo reach your destination to groom yourself or do it behind you begin your car journey. Applying makeup while driving could be catastrophic.
Avoid Eating Behind the Wheel
Even if you are running late, you should not eat while driving. Eating can be a distraction as it takes your eyes off the road. If possible, wait to consume your food until you reach your destination. Otherwise, find a safe area to stop, like a parking lot, and then consume your food.
Though sometimes easier said than done, staying calm can reduce the chances of getting into an accident. Put all arguments by passengers on hold until you are out of the car. If you have friends in the car, communicate that you don’t want to be distracted behind the wheel. Or even better, teens should avoid driving with a lot of passengers. With additional passengers, the odds of getting into an accident increases.
Instill Good Habits
If you are an adult, teach your child good driving habits from the start. It will help them build good life-long driving practices. You should also try to set a good example for them while you are driving. Teens can pick up on your driving habits, so it’s important to show them what safe driving looks like. Have a discussion with your teen about safe driving and ways to avoid distracted driving.
Don’t fall victim to distracted driving. It is preventable and you could be saving lives. Most things, like checking text messages or applying makeup, can wait until after you reach your destination. Be safe on the road. It’s also a good idea to have auto insurance as well. If you do end up in an accident, it can help protect you financially.
Talk to an Encharter Agent today about how to stay safe on the road 888.754.8299!