This is a sponsored guest post.
Keeping your kids safe is a mom’s ultimate priority. And it’s no surprise that many teens want to take a road trip at some point. For example, let’s say that they decide to travel to New York City. As a parent, you start doing some research.
“The lower speed limit, increased enforcement and safer street designs are all building on each other to keep New Yorkers safe,” Mayor de Blasio explained. “Now we must deepen this work. Not even a single tragedy on our streets is acceptable, and we’ll keep fighting every day to protect our people.”
Driving in New York can be pretty dangerous for adults, but even more so for teens. Parents know the elevated stress levels that come from having a teen on the road. From accidents to traffic infractions, there are certainly a lot of driving safety issues to discuss with teens. Teen safety behind the wheel is always a top concern for parents.
However, the risk for accidents still exist no matter where your teen is traveling. So what do you need to discuss with your teen? The following can serve as a quick guide to keeping your teens safe and ticket free while driving.
Understanding Traffic Infractions
Driving accidents are important to discuss with your teens, but keeping them safe from traffic infractions is also worthy of a discussion or two. That’s because traffic infractions can be permanent and costly. Most teens think a ticket is just something that happens while driving. However, if the consequences are portrayed more seriously, like losing driving privileges all together, a teen may be a bit more careful.
For example, speeding in New York over 21 to 30 mph can earn your teen 6 points on their license. And speeding over 31 to 40 mph can get him or her 8 points. Those points add up pretty quickly. Let’s say your teen was speeding over 31 mph while using a mobile device and failed to stop at a stop sign. That is a total license point accumulation of 16 points. This is serious because a teen with more than 6 points in an 18 month period has to pay a Driver Responsibility Assessment Fee.
Teen Driving Risks And New York Driving Laws
At 17 years old your teen is eligible to get a driver’s license if he or she passes a driver education course and has had a junior license without incident. By 18 years of age, teens can get a fully unrestricted license, if there has been no traffic infractions or accidents. This is a big deal for teens, and especially more so for parents of teen drivers.
With a fully unrestricted driver’s license, your teen no longer has night driving or passenger restrictions. This increases risk for accidents and tickets. For instance, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stated, “Teens driving with teen passengers: The presence of teen passengers increases the crash risk of unsupervised teen drivers. This risk increases with the number of teen passengers.”
How can you ensure your teen is safe and ticket free with the traffic enforcement going up in New York? The first thing is to set up a teen driver agreement. This agreement set forth the rules and expectations you and your teen decide on before they get behind the wheel.
This can cover a number of traffic infractions in New York like texting and driving, hands-free mobile use, seat belts, DUIs, reckless driving, and more. With the Vision Zero initiative in place, this is a must. You should also cover what to do when stopped by the police. And if your teen gets a traffic infraction, prepare to go to court.
Parents Share The Responsibility
“Teens will be teens, and driving safely and without traffic infractions is a parent initiative,” says Farris, Riley & Pitt, attorneys in Birmingham. “The laws in many states are quite strict these days. Yes, the number of deaths has gone down, but the number of traffic violations may go up, putting your teen at risk for a permanent driving record that is costly.”
Parents share the responsibility and need to open communication about safe driving. Discuss mobile device use while driving, paying attention to stop signs, and keeping speeds under the legal limit, which is 25 mph in most of the city now. Are you a parent that has successfully navigated teen driving? What are your tips?