It used to be that parents just passed on bad hereditary traits like flat feet, acne, or a propensity to grow an exorbitant amount of back hair. In today's world, parents are responsible for passing on good driving techniques yet some taught are the antithesis to safe driving.
You may have already studied up on the first part of this blog, but there are additional habits of mass destruction parents are handing down to their impressionable students and they are important to take note of. However, before you read this on your Smartphone, Blackberry, or Blueberry make sure you are not in the car with your teenager. Set some good examples. Remember only YOU can prevent forest fires?and bad driving habits.
1. Not giving enough practice time
We now live in a society where you are not only expected to grab the bull by the horns, but flip him upside down, twirl him, then finish him off with a half nelson. Our kids may be able to program an iPod in five seconds, but learning to drive still takes time. 100 hours is the suggested time to spend with your kids to ensure they are practicing safe techniques and feel comfortable on the road.
2. Braking too hard or too late
Before cars were invented it was customary to yank the reins of the animal you were traveling on in order to come to a halt. It was done in a jerky manner and did not require a gradual pull in order to slow the beast. Today's means of transportation work a little differently. Anticipating ahead of you on the road and slowly easing into a stop will not only save your brakes over time, but is a good driving technique. It also will save thousands of dollars in chiropractor bills for your whiplashed passengers.
3. Road Rage
Driving turns even the kindness of people into irascible monsters. If your children are in the car, try to remember to take a deep breath and relax before you scream obscenities out the car window. This is a bad habit that your child may take as normal. Practicing this will do wonders for your blood pressure as well.
4. Drinking and driving
It seems logical that one shouldn't down one, two, maybe seven cold ones and then get behind the wheel but it happens more than we realize. A recent national study released in December revealed that parents who received DUI's also had children who admitted to driving under the influence. Monkey see, monkey do.
I'm sotally tober offizer. My Dad drinks and drives all the time, so I'm fine.
Don't let this happen. Model behavior will at least give your kids a fighting chance. Behind the wheel is no exception.
5. Not obeying road signs
Just because no police cars are in sight doesn't mean you don't have to obey road signs. They are in place to make the roads safer and by blowing them off your tyke will think that is ok to do too.
Taking the extra time and energy in the car with a young one will go a long way. You may not notice it right away, but each time you do something potentially unsafe in the car you could be putting someone in jeopardy when they get behind the wheel. Test your road sign knowlege now with our Traffic and Road Sign Practice Test.
Best of luck out there.
Want to read more and missed part 1 of this blog?