Lesson 3: When Teens Shouldn’t Drive

The best way for teens to get better at driving is to spend time behind the wheel, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t limitations on when they should drive. 

Risky Driving Conditions

Certain conditions can be particularly challenging for inexperienced drivers, including driving at night, in heavy traffic and inclement weather. While new drivers will eventually need to gain practice in these conditions, it’s best to start slow. Your teen should get lots of practice in easy conditions before moving onto more difficult ones. Keep this in mind as you gear up for your teen’s eventual driving lessons.  

Dangerous Situations

You should also avoid having your teen drive in risky situations, like on holidays or around large events. Picture the roads on a typical Fourth of July celebration, for example. There are bound to be:

  • Lots of extra cars on the road
  • An increase in pedestrians
  • Packed parking lots
  • Low-light conditions
  • Impaired drivers
  • Fireworks and other distractions

These risks are more likely to overwhelm inexperienced drivers and increase their crash risk, which is why teens should avoid them. Keep this in mind throughout your teen’s driving education; though experience is crucial, it shouldn’t be at the expense of your teen’s safety.

Practice: During an upcoming holiday or large event, take your teen out for a drive but keep the steering wheel to yourself. As you drive in the congested traffic, ask your teen to point out all the risks he or she sees. Then, once you get home, talk through these dangers and explain why your teen should avoid them. 


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