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How can I stop my teen from driving while distracted?

Ohio’s Bureau of Motor Vehicles offices are open again, and teenagers throughout the state are taking their driver’s license tests. If it has not happened already, your teen son or daughter could soon be driving on their own for the first time.

It’s a rite of passage and a step toward adult independence. But the first years of driving can also be a dangerous time. Bad habits like distracted driving, combined with inexperience behind the wheel, can lead to a serious car accident. Teenagers are the age group most likely to drive while distracted by their phones, so this danger is very real.

What you can do to protect your kids

Fortunately, as a parent, there are things you can do to help your teen avoid picking up the bad habit of distracted driving. Here are a few tips:

  • Talk to your kids about distracted driving. Explain how and why it is dangerous, and that in Ohio, it is illegal for a driver under 18 to use their phone while driving, even hands-free. Let them know you expect them to leave their phone alone while driving.
  • Be a role model. Don’t drive while distracted by your phone or anything else. If you are a habitual distracted driver, work on quitting.
  • Help teach your teen to drive. Don’t just rely on professional instructors.

While you can help teach your teenage children not to commit distracted driving, you cannot control what strangers do. Distracted driving is a serious problem on Ohio’s highways and roads. Every year, it injures far too many innocent people. Until distracted driving becomes a thing of the past, victims will continue to need compensation for their medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering and more.

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