While kids and teenagers love the festivities of Halloween, there is a fine line between fun and safety concerns for parents. As the annual National Teen Driver Safety Week approaches, taking place from October 18-24, there is no better time to talk to your teen drivers about safe driving practices than during Halloween this year.
While the coronavirus pandemic may change certain plans and trick-or-treating practices, you can bet that the same safety concerns as always will be present and need to be addressed. Here are some tips to ensure your teen driver is safe during Halloween celebrations:
Practice Makes Perfect
You may have decades of driving experience, but your newly-licensed teen driver does not. Even after acquiring their driver’s licenses, teens are still learning how to develop proper driving habits and safe techniques. If you feel like they could use more practice, have them drive in place of you and provide helpful feedback that they can use to stay safe.
Limit Night Driving on Halloween
Research shows that, while only about a quarter of driving is done at night, about 50% of all accidents occur at this time. Halloween night can be especially dangerous for teen drivers, who may be in a hurry to get to gatherings or hang out with friends.
If possible, limit them driving during “Halloween Rush Hour”—typically between 5:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. If they are going out during this time, make sure they follow a few basic safety techniques for nighttime driving:
- Do not drink and drive
- Do not ride with drivers who are drunk or impaired
- Wear glasses, if needed
- Use headlights and high beams, when necessary
- Reduce your speed and increase your buffer
Teach Them About Halloween Pedestrians
Pedestrian accidents and fatalities soar during Halloween, with young children especially at risk. Here’s a scary statistic from the National Safety Council (NSC): children are more than twice as likely to be hit by a car and killed on Halloween night compared to any other day of the year.
It’s crucial to teach teen drivers about pedestrian safety, especially during this time. Ensure they make their car a distraction-free zone, keep a proper lookout, and always yield to pedestrians. It’s important for them to reduce their speed when driving through residential areas, as children can quickly dart across the street unexpectedly.
Be An Example & Set Rules
Whether you know it or not, your teen will look to you for guidance. If they see you fiddling with your phone while driving, they may think that this behavior is acceptable. Be a good role model when it comes to safe driving, especially when your teens are in the car. When you set a good example, it can make it easier to set rules for them to follow because they know you’re doing it, too!
If your teen is injured in a car accident during this time, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Chatham Gilder Howell Pittman. Our dedicated legal team is committed to helping you and your family through trying times so that you can focus on healing together.
Contact our Mississippi car accident lawyer at (662) 222-0597 to get started with a no-fee, no-obligation consultation.