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Tips for teenage drivers

Keeping their teen safe on the road is an important mission for parents. Here are eight tips for teen driving safety.

1. Know your teen. Not all teenagers mature at the same time. Parents need to determine if their teen is emotionally ready and responsible enough to drive.
2. Practice improves safety. Provide opportunities to expose your teen to complex intersections and traffic circles to increase your teen's driver skills.
3. Reiterate the importance of "no cell phones while driving". This includes cell phone talking or texting.
4. Know the road conditions. Provide safe exposure (perhaps in a parking lot) of having your teen drive in rain, snow and ice conditions to learn what to do in case of hydroplaning or a skid.
5. Emphasize the importance of car maintenance. Proper oil levels, air tire pressure, and tire tread are just some of the important maintenance precautions your teenager should know about.
6. Invest in a roadside assistance program. If you don't already have one, invest in a roadside assistance program that your teen can access in case of an emergency.
7. Discuss defensive driving techniques. Even minor fender/benders can hike up premiums, and traffic violations can be costly financially and to your teen's driving license record.
8. Stress the importance of wearing a seatbelt. The bottom line: buckling up saves lives.

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