Tips to Keep Graduation and the Summer Safe

High school is full of unforgettable moments and milestones. Among these milestones, the events that might stick out the most in young people’s minds are graduation and the following summer.

Sadly, this time of year can have some tragic defining moments as well, including serious car accidents involving teens who are distracted or even under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Here at the Warwick Agency we want to help keep this season as safe as it is happy, to make sure that the celebrations aren’t marred by tragedy. So, with the help of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, here are some tips to help keep your teen safe. 

The Basics

Above all else, you should strongly encourage your teen to follow these general safe-driving rules:

  • Absolutely no alcohol
  • Always use seat belts
  • No cell phone use (including texting) while driving

Special Circumstances

Special events, like graduation, often present special circumstances. There may be dinner with dates as well as parties before or after the ceremony. Given it’s hard to keep an eye on your teens when they’re jumping between additional celebrations, it’s a good idea to discuss your expectations well before the special events so you can put some guidelines in place before they head out for the day or night.

Check In

One of the biggest concerns for parents is knowing their child is safe, especially knowing that things can get out of hand when you have large groups of kids together. You’ll want to make sure that you know their plans for the evening – be sure to press them for specifics – as well as who else will be with your teen. You’re going to want to have contact information for everybody just in case you can’t get in touch; We all know that kids aren’t always great at “hearing” their phones when there’s partying going on.

Naturally, you’ll want to be able to get in touch with your teen at all times. However, just in case your calls don’t get through, you could arrange for them to check in with you throughout the celebrations. If you’re a hands-off parent, you might ask for them to call you once or twice during the night, particularly when they’re leaving one location for the next.

If you want to keep a better handle on them, you might even encourage them to call you once every hour. Of course, if they don’t get in touch and your calls aren’t getting through, you’ll have their friends’ contact information in case of an emergency.

Set Boundaries

You’re also going to want to set limits. This includes setting a curfew, whether they’re coming home or staying with a friend. (And, if they are staying elsewhere, make sure that the curfew will be enforced by a responsible adult.) You should also discuss how to handle difficult situations, such facing pressure to drink or to share a ride with somebody who shouldn’t be driving.

No matter what, your highest priority should be getting your teen home safely. This might include giving them money for a taxi just in case their ride becomes unavailable. Another option is offering a “no-questions-asked” ride home.

Remember: graduation and the following summer are special times in a teen’s life, whether they’re going to Brookfield High School, Danbury High School, or any of the other excellent Connecticut high schools. Just a little common sense will go a long way toward making sure your young adult is around to enjoy the other milestones that are sure to come.

Sites for More Information:

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration: https://www.nhtsa.gov/road-safety/teen-driving

Safer Car: https://www.safercar.gov/parents/TeenDriving/teendriving.htm

As always, if you live around the Brookfield, CT area be sure to give us a call today at (203) 775-2564 with any of your insurance questions or needs.

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