As that final school bell rings, the streets are suddenly filled with teens piling into cars and heading to summer jobs, the beach, concerts, amusement parks, or simply hanging out at friends’ houses. It’s what teens do. With all this extra activity on the roads, especially amongst the youngest and most inexperienced of drivers, Herb Chambers Honda of Seekonk wants to encourage all our parents to take a few minutes to discuss with their kids these basic safety guidelines for their summertime driving,
Piling everyone into the car to share a ride means less chauffeuring for the parents to do. YAY! But before your kid heads out to pick everyone up, or hop into someone else’s car, make sure these rules are understood and followed:
- Everyone wears a seatbelt. Everyone. All the time. Every time.
- The driver’s only job is to drive. Changing the music, setting the GPS, finding a parking spot – the passengers can manage those.
- Limit nighttime driving. It stays light late enough, so the safest bet is for everyone to be home and off the roads before it gets dark.
Summertime does not mean just more teens are on the road. More people in total are on the road. The long days and warm weather encourages people to get out and go places, contrary to the winter months where we prefer to stay home. And the roads fill up with non-car traffic too. Younger kids are also out of school, so neighborhoods and side streets are filled with children playing outside on their residential streets. Caution teens to watch for people taking walks, going for a run, or riding their bike. To do this requires slowing down and minimizing distractions to stay aware of the environment and any sudden changes – like a kid running out after a ball.
Speak to their Wallet
Speaking of slowing down, one way to encourage teens to stay below the speed limit is to speak to their wallet. Slower speeds result in better gas mileage, meaning fewer fill-ups at the gas station are required. The same applies for avoiding rapid acceleration and braking. Those burn fuel, which just burns through their cash. And lastly, a speeding ticket or an accident is going to result in massive hikes to their insurance premiums, not to mention any repair bill costs that must be covered.
If your teen will be the one driving, take the opportunity to do practice runs with them. Parent and child make the trip from home to the concert venue, or the beach, or wherever they might head out, when it’s just the two of them in the car. This gives the teen driver the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the route without any distractions like friends bouncing with excitement in the backseat.
Lastly, take the opportunity to prep your teen’s car for summertime driving. Change out snow tires for good all-season ones. Check and change all the fluids – oil, transmission, brake, windshield, etc. And make sure an emergency roadside kit is stocked and kept in the vehicle.
Summer is meant to be filled with friends and fun activities. Our Herb Chambers Honda Seekonk team wants everyone to get out and enjoy it all. Taking a few minutes to speak directly to the teen drivers we love and set some basic guidelines will help keep everyone safe as they hit the road!
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