We’ve seen a ton of articles lately about teens driving during the summer months. We’ve shared several on our social media spaces because as parents, we want our kids to have a fun, safe summer. Also, as your insurance Advocate, we want to give you as much information as possible so that you can educate your kids and do what you can to help keep them safe.
Why is summer driving so dangerous?
Summer months put more cars on the road. Families are on vacation. Kids are out of school. Teens have more time to hang out with their friends.
How bad is it?
Statistically 10 people die each day during the summer in automobile accidents involving teens. They call the time frame between Memorial Day and Labor Day the 100 Deadliest Days because there are 38% more fatalities for the 15 – 19 year old age range.
What is a parent to do?
The most important pieces of advice we can give are to set a good example, keep an open dialogue about driving and set clear expectations.
Set a good example. Sometimes we are so busy telling our kids what to do that we forget the importance of being a good role model. That means that we have to adhere to traffic laws and use common sense every time we get behind the wheel. If we don’t wear our seatbelts, text while driving and make the decision to drive home after we’ve had a drink or two we are telling our kids that it is ok to let those rules slide. Arranging for an alternative ride after having a few drinks at a family party will send a clear message without you ever having to open your mouth!
Keep an open dialogue. Talk to them about their plans. If they are heading out on the road to an unfamiliar destination, offer to help them navigate the route. Talk to them about not only the big things like distracted driving, drunk driving and speeding but also simple things like maintaining tire pressure and wearing seat belts. Don’t assume they know, instead help to prepare them for the unexpected. It is also a good idea to talk to them about what to do if they are in an accident.
Set expectations. You are the best judge of your child’s abilities and limitations. If you are concerned that they are going to be distracted when taking a car full of buddies out for a drive, set a limit on the number of passengers they are allowed to have in the car.
Your Insurance Needs
Having a teen driver in the house is not only stressful, it is expensive! Adding a teen driver to your policy increases the average automobile premium by 79%. (New Yorkers don’t panic – the average increase is 52% for us). We are here to help guide our customers to the best possible coverage for the best possible cost. We have created a guide for teen drivers and their parents. It offers advice on adding a teen to your policy and offers a Teen Driving Contract and a guide for what to do if they are involved in an auto accident. Click here for your copy.
Protecting your family is the most important part of what we do. We are always here to offer information and advice or to make recommendations so you can have peace of mind and enjoy your teenager. Let us know if we can answer any questions!