Thursday 18 July 2024

Keeping your child safe on the road

It’s always mixed feelings when your child passes their test and gets on the road. On the one hand, you’re proud they’ve completed a milestone, and also that you no longer have to drive them everywhere.

On the other hand, well, the roads aren’t a playground; they’re dangerous spaces that must be treated seriously and with respect. Seriousness and respectful behaviour don’t always come naturally to teenagers, so you may be required to take some steps that their driving instructor won’t have taken with them. We take a look at a few tips below.

A reliable vehicle

You can be the safest driver in the world, but if you’re not driving a reliable vehicle, then you might find yourself in some trouble. If your child is going to be driving your car, then you’ll be fine – if it’s good enough for you, then it’s good enough for them.

However, many new drivers like to buy their own vehicle, and we all know that they don’t have much cash to play with. They’ll be drawn to getting whatever car they can buy that stays within budget. You’ll need to be on hand to check that what they’re buying isn’t so beat up that it’ll be a danger on the road.

In the shallow end

Freedom and adventure are powerful forces, ones that can make us do things that are beyond our capabilities. When a person passes their test, they’re very quick to make plans to venture off on some grand journey, clocking up many miles and hours of driving in the process.

But driving long-distances is akin to a marathon. You wouldn’t just rock up and do a marathon; you’d go into training first. The same with driving. Recommend that they get used to the roads and feel of the car before they set off on long road trips.

Knowing the risks

In many cases, the thing that your son will have to worry about won’t be his or her driving skills; it’ll be the other people on the road. There are plenty of compensation claims arising from car accidents due to the negligence or dangerous driving of other people.

While your child won’t always be able to escape the other drivers on the road, they can put themselves more out of harm’s way by ensuring there’s always plenty of space between their vehicle and the ones around them, and avoiding driving in places where there is an increased chance of dangerous driving (such as nightlife hotspots).

Basic car maintenance

Of course, no matter how well prepared you are, there will always be times when things become a little hazardous in the vehicle. They may get bumped, or just break down – it can happen to any car.

To ensure they’re kept safe, make sure that they know the basics of car maintenance, and that they have any phone numbers that’ll come to their rescue in the event of an emergency. As with most things in life, knowledge and preparation are key to staying safe.

** This is a collaborative post

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