Lesson 10: Help Your Teen Prepare for Roadway Emergencies - National Safety Council

Lesson 10: Help Your Teen Prepare for Roadway Emergencies

On the road, the unexpected can happen at any time. That’s why teen drivers must plan ahead and get their vehicles ready to stay safe in an emergency. Here are some tips to help your teen put together an emergency kit and prepare for hazards on the road.

Plan for Trips

Once your teen starts driving alone, he or she should have a plan for each trip, and let you know the details in case of an emergency. These can include basic details like:

  • Where your teen plans to drive
  • The route your teen plans to take
  • When your teen plans to return
  • Any weather conditions that could pose a hazard

In an emergency situation, these details can be crucial to your teen’s safety, so make sure your teen shares them before each drive.

Create an Emergency Kit

Every vehicle should have an emergency supply kit located in the trunk. Kits should be checked every six months, and expired items should be replaced. Your teen’s kit should contain:

  • A properly inflated spare tire, wheel wrench, tripod jack and jumper cables
  • A tool kit, compass, duct tape and extra car charger for your teen’s phone
  • A flashlight with extra batteries, rain poncho and fire extinguisher
  • Reflective triangles and vest, as well as brightly-colored cloth to make your teen’s vehicle more visible
  • Drinking water, a first aid kit and nonperishable, high-energy foods
  • Cold weather items such as a snow brush, shovel, windshield washer fluid, warm clothing, blankets and cat litter for traction

Your teen should also keep family and emergency phone numbers, including the auto insurance provider and a towing company, in his or her phone, and physically written down.

Practice: Be sure to regularly review the kit’s contents with your teen, and ensure he or she knows how to use everything in it. Some of these items might be unfamiliar to experienced drivers, so review the directions and the vehicle’s manual until you both understand how to do things like change a flat tire or safely jump the car’s battery. 

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GM Foundation