Tips For Teaching Teenagers To Drive
It may not be as intimidating as the "birds and the bees" talk, but it can be just as important.
Introduce the Owner Guide. It’s crucial that they thoroughly understand the vehicle they'll be driving, but it doesn't have to be dry reading. Try making a quiz game out of it. You can even have gas money be the prize.
Explain the concept of maintenance. Kids should understand that a car can’t go on forever if it's not properly maintained. Well-maintained vehicles work more safely, more efficiently and retain their value longer, saving you – or them – money down the line. Make sure they know that they should visit the local Ford or Lincoln Dealership regularly for scheduled maintenance. You can even set up their first appointment for them.
Talk to them about potential distractions. Most teenagers make cell phones, MP3 players and text messaging a big part of their lives. Make sure they understand the dangers of trying to use them while driving. If the vehicle they’ll be using features SYNC®* technology, make sure to teach them how to use it – if they haven’t figured it out already, that is.
Establish an emergency plan. Your teenager should know what to do in case of an accident, break-in, road-rage encounter or a breakdown. Make sure he or she knows the numbers for Roadside Assistance, the local police and who to call if you can’t be reached, as well as the location of your local Ford or Lincoln Dealership in case the vehicle requires towing.
Practice defensive maneuvers. Even if your teenagers has already taken a driver’s education course, make sure they know how the vehicle they’ll be driving responds to real-world hazards by practicing these defensive driving techniques.
Help orient them. When driving with your teenager, point out major roads, landmarks and street patterns. Teach them to use maps and be comfortable with their routes before they go out on the road. If the vehicle they’ll be using is equipped with a navigation system, teach them how to use it and how not to be reliant on it – you want them to be able to find their way around without one, too.
*Driving while distracted can result in loss of vehicle control. Only use mobile phones and other devices, even with voice commands, when it is safe to do so.
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