In Nigeria, the lawful age for new drivers is 18 years. However many people start to learn to drive as soon as they have access to a car, with some people learning to drive from as early as 14 years old. This can be quite dangerous because statistically, teen drivers account for more driving related accidents than any other group. However, by carefully following a few simple tips, you can ensure that your teenager is safe and builds a good driving record in the process, therefore allowing for more affordable car insurance.
Emphasising the importance of security as well as safety is also important; no one wants to go through the experience of losing valuables because their car has been opened or worse, stolen.
Experience is the Key
Inexperience is the leading cause of teen deaths related to driving; in fact, motor vehicle crashes are one of the leading causes of death for teenagers all over the world. Fortunately, these deaths are preventable. Help your teen to practice as much as possible and allow experimentation in different situations and road conditions. The more practice your teen gets before they receive their license, the better they will be as a driver.
Stress the Importance of Turning Off Mobile Phones
Texting or using a cell phone while driving has been demonstrated to be the equivalent of driving drunk, due to the way reflexes slow. This applies even when using a hands-free phone. Texting and driving, in particular, has been the cause of an incredible number of perfectly avoidable deaths in teen drivers and adults alike.
Furthermore, the Nigerian government actually prohibits the use of phones while driving.
Set a Good Example
Your teenager cannot take your advice seriously if you are consulting your phone, texting and otherwise engaging in other dangerous driver behaviors. Your teen looks up to you to set a good example; if you want him to drive safely, make it your own priority as well. Avoid checking your phone while driving, going over the speed limit and, most importantly, drinking and driving.
Drinking and driving is particularly dangerous because alcohol directly affects your judgment, depth perception and motor skills required to drive safely.
Also remember to always wear your seatbelt, check that your car has a clean windshield and adjust the headrest to an optimal position.
Don’t Forget About Security
Being a responsible driver and car owner also means being particularly attentive to security issues. Remind your teen to avoid exposing valuable items, such as laptops or mobile phones, while running errands or generally leaving the car unattended. This applies to a stationary car; leaving the car unattended and running serves as an invitation to theft. If possible, it is better to park in a well-lit area in public view, allowing for thieves to be easily spotted, or perhaps in authorized car parks where effective security is definitely available.
Also considering implement advanced track and trace tracking solutions as an excellent security measure for your teen’s car. Vehicle trackers have in fact been proven to be very effective in tracking stolen vehicles, therefore sparing the money of replacing a stolen vehicle and the stress of a car theft.
These simple tips can help your teen drivers become safer and more responsible. Remember that good habits require repetition and allowing your teen to practice as much as possible will help them acquire safe driver techniques which, with time, will seem easy and natural.