Drivers below the age of 19 are at a much higher risk of being involved in accidents over the summer. In fact, the 100 -day period between the Memorial Day and Labor Day holidays account for some of the most dangerous days of the year for teenage drivers. A teenage driver’s risk of being killed in an accident during these 100 days is higher than it is during the other days of the year.
Summer is when parents need to get much more serious about setting limitations on their children's driving. As a responsible parent, you no doubt have conversations about your children driving safely. It's time to have those conversations in time for summer. If you haven't already done so, it is also time to sign a parent-teen driving agreement with your child. This agreement should include all safe driving rules. Also include penalties that will apply, if those rules are violated. A parent-teen driving agreement helps your child understand that driving is a privilege, not a right. It involves responsibilities that must be taken seriously.
Reduce the amount of time that your child spends driving with friends. It isn't easy to do this, but as a parent, you have to set down strict limitations. Nonessential driving is one reason why teen accident fatalities spike during the summer months. Driving around aimlessly with teenage passengers increases dangerous driving behaviors, and teenagers are also much more likely to be distracted by their friends’ conversations. That's one of the reasons why California's novice driver laws set the limitations on teen passengers.
The long hot days of summer don't have to be this dangerous for teenage drivers. As a parent, you can do much to protect your child.