Before solo driving begins, make sure your teen driver understands the responsibilities of safely operating a vehicle, and is in agreement to do the following:
- Obey the speed limit, always wear a safety belt, don’t drive when fatigued and avoid distractions and aggressive driving.
- Check in prior to every trip to give you the destination, route and time expected home. If your teen wants to drive with a passenger, you must provide permission first.
- Make smart decisions about being a passenger, such as asking your permission before riding with a new teen driver, avoiding riding in cars with multiple teen passengers, never riding with distracted, drinking or drugged drivers and always wearing a safety belt.
- Call you for a ride if there is any concern regarding safety.
- Know how to appropriately respond to peer pressure
- Be responsible for any passengers in the vehicle to ensure they buckle up and ride without distracting the driver.
- Continue to practice driving with you, especially before trying an unfamiliar driving situation like rush-hour traffic, city driving, narrow country roads, night driving or poor weather.
- Keep the car clean and full of gas, among other family rules.
- Abide by your family’s parent-teen driving agreement.
A cooperative effort sponsored by AAA Kansas and the Kansas Department of Transportation to increase restraint compliance through positive rewards and strong enforcement messages
- If the driver is belted … the child is belted 92% of the time.
- If the driver is NOT belted … the child is belted only 23% of the time.
“Recently, I was dispatched to the scene of a rollover crash with one occupant. The vehicle was still resting on its top when I arrived. The driver was sitting alongside the roadway being helped by a passerby. I could see obvious injuries to her arm as there was blood around the elbow and hand. I recognized her as a 17-year-old who attends high school with my daughter. I asked, ‘Were you wearing your seatbelt?’ She looked at me and said, ‘You know I was, Sandy, I attended your Seatbelts are For Everyone class.’ I followed the ambulance to the hospital and waited until her mom arrived. Mom told me she always wears her seatbelt now, and she makes sure everybody else does, too. Had she not been wearing her seatbelt, this teen would have suffered serious injuries or died.” — Sheriff Sandy Horton, Crawford County, Kansas
The SAFE program is expanding to high schools in other Kansas counties. Find out more about a SAFE event near you.