The winter season brings with it not only a picturesque snowy landscape but also challenging driving conditions. For parents of young drivers, this time of year is a great time to have a heart-to-heart conversation about the importance of exercising extra caution on the road.
With snow, ice and reduced daylight, the risks of accidents rise, making it more important for young drivers to adhere to road safety rules.
Pennsylvania crash facts
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation recently released the 2022 Crash Fact Book. During that year, the state had 115,938 reported motor vehicle collisions. These crashes injured 67,012 people and produced 1,179 fatalities among those traveling in vehicles. The collisions also wounded and killed many pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists.
Several crashes involved young drivers. There were 172 drivers under 16 years old and 21,491 in the 16-20 age group.
Emphasizing road rules
Parents should be sure their young drivers understand the gravity of winter driving hazards. Reinforce the basics:
- Avoid speeding.
- Refrain from distractions posed by passengers and electronics.
- Never drive while fatigued.
- Always wear seat belts.
- Never drive if intoxicated or while using mind-altering drugs.
These simple reminders can make a significant difference in preventing accidents.
Preventing and responding to accidents
Beyond instilling good driving habits, parents should share practical knowledge on accident prevention and response. Teach young drivers the steps to take in the unfortunate event of a collision: prioritizing attending to injuries, calling 911, promptly informing parents and collecting necessary information from other involved parties.
Instruct teens on how to gather evidence at the scene responsibly. Be sure they know not to admit fault for causing the collision.
Monitoring and safety measures
Parents can take proactive steps to monitor their young drivers. Consider installing tracking devices on vehicles or utilizing smartphone apps designed for this purpose. This allows parents to stay informed about their teenager’s driving habits and location.
Letting young drivers use the newest cars with advanced safety features can provide an extra layer of protection in case of an accident.
Collaboration for safety
Collaboration between parents and young drivers is key. Establish an open line of communication, ensuring that you address any concerns or questions about winter driving. Encourage responsibility and accountability on the road, fostering a culture of safety that extends beyond the winter months.
Protecting your interests
If your child has an accident, contacting an attorney helps you to navigate the insurance claims process. Their assistance is particularly invaluable if anyone in the crash sustained injuries. Lawyers can begin an investigation immediately, gathering valuable evidence while it is still fresh.