How to help your child be a safe driver
Even the most responsible of new drivers is lacking vital experience on the road. According to the Government’s THINK! Road Safety (opens in a new window) website, You are more likely to have an accident in the first two years after passing your test than at any other time. Young male drivers are particularly at risk in the early hours of the morning when, in terms of per mile driven, they are 17 times more likely to have an accident as the average male.
What you can do
Talking to your children about the dangers of drink driving is undoubtedly important. But backing this up with the offer of assistance if needed is particularly valuable.
While you may not want to become a late-night taxi service on a regular basis, it’s worthwhile for your child to know that, if they have been drinking alcohol or feel unable to drive home for any reason, they can make the sensible decision to call on you.
If your son or daughter doesn’t adopt safe driving habits, he or she runs the risk of getting penalty points. The New Driver’s Act of 1995 states that six or more of these given within the two years of passing your first driving test will result in your licence being revoked. If this happens, your child will have to reapply for a provisional licence and pass both the theory and practical parts of the test again.
Room for improvement
The Pass Plus training scheme is a great way to boost existing driving skills. It can be taken any time in the first 12 months after passing the driving test. New drivers can build up knowledge and learn under expert tuition how to deal with all kinds of hazards.
Six practical modules cover driving in town, in all weathers, on rural roads, at night, on dual carriageways and on motorways. There’s continual assessment, rather than a test at the end, and successful completion means Churchill car insurance will give a discount (depending on the age of the driver).
As new drivers are more vulnerable on the road, it makes sense to take extra precautions. A car with green P plates lets people know the driver has recently passed their test and may need a little more time and consideration than usual.
Making the right choice
Helping your son or daughter to choose a decent, roadworthy car will get them off to a great start. If they opt for a car with a smaller engine size, they could be able to take out cheaper car insurance with Churchill and find the vehicle is more cost-effective to run.
Call on the experts for a reliable opinion before you buy and invest in a professional inspection from a motoring organisation such as Green Flag (opens in a new window).
Maintaining an interest
Make the most of your son or daughter’s pride in the new purchase by encouraging them to clean it and carry out regular maintenance checks to keep the car in great condition. Weekly checks should include inspecting the lights to ensure they work correctly, keeping the fluid levels topped up, checking the condition of the tyres and wiper blades. Then all that’s left for you to do is relax and persuade them to return the favour for all the lifts you’ve given them over the years!