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It’s winter break time, when your teen is out of school and back home with plenty of free time to spend with friends and loved ones. And though you might worry about your teen getting hurt on the ski slopes, their car poses a much bigger risk.
That’s why it’s so important for parents to stay involved and aware of their teen’s driving habits. In fact, it’s a perfect time to spend a few minutes with your teen reviewing your New Driver Deal together.
Remember, your New Driver Deal is a living document, a collection of rules and restrictions you and your teen both agree on, with room for your teen to earn new driving privileges as they gain experience. And some of the most important rules are particularly crucial during the winter season. Remind your teen to:
In addition to reviewing these rules with your teen, reinforce your commitment to staying involved as they learn to drive. One of the most important parts of your New Driver Deal is the parent/guardian’s section, and if you expect your teen to stick to their rules you have to be accountable for yours.
Make time to ride with your teen during the winter, even if they’ve already gotten a license. You want their first time driving in snow to be with you there as their coach guiding them, not your teen all alone trying to figure it out.
With all of the added risks in the winter, parents should also make themselves more available to drive their teens around. Even if there’s not a storm on the way but if the roads are extra snowy or icy, it’s better for you to drive rather than your teen. Teens simply don’t have the experience needed to safely manage roads in winter conditions. It may be inconvenient, but the extra time you’ll spend shuttling your teen across town is worth making sure they always get home safe.
DriveitHOME™ is an initiative of the National Safety Council, designed by and for parents of newly licensed teen drivers. DriveitHOME™ offers free resources parents can use to help their teen build experience to become safer drivers.
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