How to talk to your teen about safe driving

How to talk to your teen about safe driving

Parent and teen


Teenage drivers between the ages of 16 and 19 are at the highest risk for automobile accidents.  For that reason, parents do well to address these risks before their child gets behind the wheel to best prepare them to be safe drivers.  The following reminders will assist in having a productive discussion with them.


Your example speaks louder than your words.


Teen drivers are at a higher risk for a variety of reasons.  They are more likely to engage in risky driving behaviors such as speeding, texting, or talking on their device while driving or not wearing a seatbelt.  Parents who avoid such risky driving behaviors themselves have already set a good pattern that their teens have observed for years. 


Keep the atmosphere calm and relaxed 


Parents can easily run into challenges while communicating with their teenage children if children feel they are being scolded.  Rather than simply stating a list of do’s and don’ts, involve them in the conversation.  Many times asking a question rather than making a statement can help to discern how they feel about something.  Note some possible questions that can address real concerns and allow your teen to express themself.

Why do you think teen drivers are at greater risk than all other ages?

How can you avoid risky driving behavior?

How can you help your friends drive safely?


Set boundaries and communicate consequences


Established rules and boundaries that encourage safe driving can save lives.  Communicating the consequences that they may face if they break some of your established boundaries will help to avoid the risk taken from becoming a pattern of risky driving.


Our goal at NHSA is to assist all drivers to be safe drivers.  Please take note of our parent-taught driver education courses or our practice test for the learner’s permit available in your state!

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