How to Teach Kids about the Dangers of Distracted Driving

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Having a teen with a newly minted driver’s license is worrisome enough as a parent. Having a teen with a new driver’s license along with smartphones, smart dashboards, and other technology in the car can provide parents with plenty of sleepless nights.

Lawmakers in Missouri have made it illegal for novice drivers to text while driving. In Kansas, lawmakers have made it illegal for novice drivers to use a cell phone while driving, whether it is hands-free or not. It is also against the law for all drivers to text while driving in Kansas.

With all of the technology available today, distracted driving has become a major problem across the country. It is important for parents to teach their children about the dangers of distracted driving so everyone can stay safe while on the roads.

Set a Good Example

Many parents feel that no matter how much they warn their driving teens, the message goes in one ear and comes out the other without registering. If this is the case in your home, you need to set a good example. Actions speak louder than words, so be sure to follow your own lecture when behind the wheel.

While driving, be sure to keep the phone out of your hands, especially if your teen is with you. If your car has a hands-free option, use it all the time. Never text while driving and avoid making hands-free phone calls while driving. Consider disabling your phone when in the car so you do not hear any notification noises.

If there is a passenger in the car with you, ask him or her to make or answer phone calls, or read or send a text message for you if it is needed. This will help you avoid any distractions and focus only on the road in front of you.

Explain All Forms of Distracted Driving

When talking to your teens about distracted driving, you cannot just focus on technology. There are plenty of other distractions that can lead to an accident. Other distractions include noisy friends in the car, searching for a CD, shaving, eating, doing your hair, putting on makeup, reading the mail, and much more.

Just about anything can be a distraction while driving, which is why you must tell your teens that they can be distracted by more than just their phone or the smartdashboard. Also, make sure that you tell your teen to keep the noise level to a minimum when driving. Loud music can become a distraction that can prevent a driver from hearing another vehicle’s horn, a train whistle at a railroad crossing, or an emergency vehicle siren.

Peers Can Actually Help Curb Distracted Driving

Even though it was thought that having teens of the same age in a car at the same time could be distracting, one study from Consumer Reports found that it might be helping curb this dangerous issue. The survey found that 50% of respondents said they were less likely to talk on a cell phone or text while driving when their friends are in the car. The respondents said they are being asked by their passengers to stop texting and driving or talking on the cell phone for fear of their safety.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a distracted driving accident or you need someone to talk to you teen about distracted driving, contact the experienced lawyers at Horn Law today. Use our contact form on our website or call 816-795-7500 to speak with a lawyer. We will reach out to you within 24 hours to schedule a consultation.