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Ways to keep your teen safe behind the wheel

Your teenager is just about to receive his California driver's license and is already planning a road trip up Highway 1. Your first instinct is to sell the family car and only use public transportation in the future. However, logic kicks in and you come to terms with the fact that at some point he is going to be driving. It's time to take steps to ensure that your child is safe behind the wheel.

Statistics show that teens have the highest rate of car accidents than any other group. Inexperienced drivers have a higher risk of suffering accidents resulting in serious injuries, such as broken bones and head, neck and back injuries. When facing the reality of your baby getting behind the wheel, the first thing you want to do is prepare him to be a safe and conscientious driver.

However, even under the best circumstances, you cannot control how other people drive. If your child has been injured in a car accident, be sure that insurance is providing the best possible medical care by consulting a California attorney experienced in personal injury cases.

Tips to keep your child safe

While the thought of your child driving without you is terrifying, there are steps you can take to help your teen stay safe behind the wheel.

Picking the right vehicle can be the difference between a sore neck and a broken bone. Stay away from small vehicles built for high performance. The last thing you want is for your child to feel encouraged to speed. Also avoid SUVs and trucks that can flip easily. Choose a sturdy vehicle, with good tires and a solid braking system.

Another strategy is to enroll your child in a recognized driver's education program. This will give your child valuable driving experience in a safe environment. The more experience a young driver has, the more confident he will be the first time he leaves your driveway on his own.

Also, talk to your teenager about the dangers of drunk driving, driving while texting, falling asleep at the wheel, and other distractions. While drivers should not be engaging in these behaviors themselves, it is important that they are aware that other people on the road do these things. Avoiding distracted and intoxicated drivers is just as important as not engaging in those activities personally.

Finally, be a good role model. Your child has been watching you drive for years, make that time count by demonstrating the same driving behaviors you want your teen to mimic.

All drivers are at risk of becoming involved in a car accident every time they get behind the wheel, but those first few years are always the most dangerous. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a car accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney in your local Southern California area.

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