Helping Teenage Drivers

There are several things that parents can do to help keep their teenagers safe behind the wheel. We'd like to highlight a few of them.

  • Coach Your Child. You should coach your teenage driver. Talk openly and frankly with your teen in order to determine their attitude about being behind the wheel. Work with your teen to set ground rules, such as the number of people allowed in the car, where the car may be taken, and curfew.

  • Install a "Governor." Many vehicles have a "governor" installed in them that restricts the amount of fuel that can be injected, thus preventing the vehicle from being driven over a certain speed, e.g. school buses and certain types of delivery vehicles. A governor in your teen's car may help keep them within the speed limits.

  • Have an Open Discussion About Driving Under the Influence. While no one wants to think about the possibility of their teenager drinking and driving--or being in a car with an impaired friend at the wheel--we need to be realistic. History has shown that teenagers will experiment with alcohol. You should make it clear to your teen that driving after drinking is not acceptable. However, if they ever do drink, or are in a car with someone else who is impaired, make it clear to your teen that they can call you at any time of the day or night and that you will come and pick them up--no questions asked.