Whether you’re driving the carpool or training a new teenage driver, here are a few tips to keep your family safe on the road.
Whether you know it or not, your kids watch you and often mimic your behaviors – including how you drive. So, if you’re running behind and under a lot of pressure, remember to stay calm on the road (even if those around you aren’t), obey the laws, and be courteous to other drivers. This is especially important if you have pre-teens or teenage children, as they will take those lessons and use them when they’re behind the wheel.
This is one of the best ways to stay safe in an accident. Research from several countries has shown that seat belts are important in reducing the risk of general injuries by 40-50%, serious injuries by 43-65%, and deaths by 40-60%.
Distracted driving is one of the easiest ways to get into trouble on the road. So, keep your attention where it needs to be – on the road and the cars around you. If you’ve got a teen driver in the family, make sure they follow these suggestions too:
• If you stop for food or drinks, eat it there instead of eating while you drive.
• Keep the radio down so you can hear what’s happening around you – and only change the station when you’re stopped.
• If others in the car are loud or misbehaving, don’t turn around to engage or reprimand them. Pull over to a safe location to handle the situation.
• Check your mirrors regularly.
• Pay attention to other drivers on the road.
• Avoid reckless drivers, if possible.
• Do not use your cell phone.
• Limit your participation in conversations to a minimum, especially during heavy traffic or adverse weather.
If you need an extra cup of coffee to really wake up, drink that before you get behind the wheel.
Be mindful that alcohol and certain medications can make you sleepy, so arrange for a designated driver.
If you have teenage drivers, stress the importance of being fully awake and aware when driving – all the time, every time.
Accidents happen, even to the most cautious drivers. For peace of mind and confident driving, ensure that your car is properly insured.