Many experts suggest parents sign driver agreements with their teen drivers to prevent car and truck accidents. If you live in an area where your teen will be driving on the highways around trucks, especially, it’s important to ensure your teen is making the right choices on the road and staying as safe as possible.
A driver agreement simply lists what your teen cannot and can do in the car and also outlines some rules and regulations for safe driving. Not all agreements are made the same, however. If you want your agreement to have bite, you’ll want to:
- Create the driving agreement with your teen, so you can brainstorm solutions together. Printing a template off the Internet may be faster, but it is also less likely to make an impact. Think carefully about which behaviors you are especially worried about with your new driver. These may behaviors you’ve seen your teen make in the past or behaviors which you think are a special risk. Instead of just listing them, however, discuss with your teen driver why they’re dangerous and what they can do to prevent this behavior in the future. For example, if you’ve seen your teen cut off a truck driver, you may want to talk about the dangers of air brakes and how difficult it is for truck drivers to stop. Then, ask your teen to come up with solutions and ways they can remember to avoid cutting in front of trucks in the future. Getting your teen involved makes the document something that they understand and can really adhere to.
- Talk about why the agreement is in place. Discuss the risks of driving on the road and sharing the road with trucks. Your teen is more likely to follow rules if they understand why they are there in the first place.
- List what your teen will promise, as well as restrictions and penalties for breaking the rules. Go over everything in the agreement, as well as the penalties for breaking the rules. Make sure you’re prepared to follow through on the rules, too. If your teen is going to lose driving privileges in certain situations, make sure that they do if they break the regulations.
- Be prepared to make promises, too. If you expect your teen not to drink and drive, make the same agreement. List consequences to you if you break your agreement. For example, you may agree not to text and drive if your teen agrees to be more careful in no zones around trucks. When your child sees you making some concessions, they may be more likely to do so, too.
- Address anything which may be hard to follow. For example, if you have a rule about no teen passengers, discuss how your teen can handle the situation if a friend asks for a ride. Discuss what to do in the case of an emergency. Sometimes, teen drivers find themselves in difficult positions and if they have already discussed with you what options are reasonable they may have an easier time making the right choice.
- Post the agreement where you will see it and review it regularly. The agreement should be an ongoing discussion about driver and truck safety, not just a one-time piece of paper that you sign.
If despite your agreement if your teen has been injured in a truck accident, contact a Hollywood truck accident attorney by contacting us at Flaxman Law Group. Your initial consultation with us is free of charge and can help you learn what your legal options are.