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When your teenager gets their car and license, you might feel both proud and nervous at the same time. This ritual of growing up means a newfound freedom for teens, and perhaps a few more gray hairs for mom and dad. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that teen drivers ages 16 to 19 are at high risk for collisions. With all the distractions on the road, along with smartphones, music and friends, how can you keep your teen safe while driving? Fortunately, new technologies offer many options to help your teen stay safe.
Just as that cellphone gets updated all the time, some cars are now equipped with unique technologies to help keep your teen driver safe. Many manufacturers are adding systems that allow you to customize various options in the car. This includes controlling the level of the stereo, tracking to review how a teen drove and setting alerts to use the seatbelts. You can also set options for speed limits and times when your child can use the car. You can even receive alerts if they go outside a preset area.
Later, you can review the reports with your teen. In some cases, you can receive texts in real time regarding potentially unsafe actions. This option is a valuable tool for you and your teen to discuss unsafe driving and address it before an accident happens. Add to this the many options widely available for all drivers — such as park-assist functions, blind spot-alert monitors, rear cameras, and fuel alerts — and these advances in technology help new drivers navigate the road while learning.
Smartphone usage is one of the things that most frequently distracts teen drivers. However, many phones now have options to set the phone to Do Not Disturb while driving. If your smartphone doesn’t have this option, you may be able to download an app to do the same thing. By using technology to limit the notifications, you can reduce your teen’s distractions.
Apps offer a wide array of other safety options, too. Download apps that send you reports on speed, driving habits, braking and other statistics. Some offer tracking to make sure your teen arrived at their destination safely.
This device can transmit information and notifications to your smartphone. These apps allow you to access many options and reports about driving; however, some require an ongoing subscription.
Although drivers’ education classes have been around for years, now your teen can practice driving before getting behind the wheel. Interactive simulators create a variety of road hazards and situations to allow teens to practice and receive coaching on how to handle these events. These simulators offer valuable experience and learning opportunities in a safe setting.
While technology can be a source of distractions that lead to unsafe driving, it can also help keep your teen safe and aid in their learning. For even more on keeping your teenager safe on the road, learn how to help make your teen a better driver.