What Driver’s Ed Doesn’t Teach Kids?

Most drivers’ education classes focus on the rules of the road and train kids to be as attentive as possible while they are behind the wheel of an automobile. But most drivers ed classes completely skip over basic car care information.

Studies found that around 300,000 accidents per year amongst teens are related to tire issues. This number is much higher than the number of tire-related accidents among adults.

Why Tires?

A vehicle can operate without a radio, door or even a roof. But every type of motorized automobile must have tires to smoothly transport you from one place to the next. While these critical components of a car can easily be overlooked, they’re often the source for auto crashes.

Many new car models have implemented TPMS or tire pressure monitoring systems that come standard on the car and some have them as part of a upgrade package. If you are buying a vehicle for your teen it may be worth it to invest slightly more money in order to make it easier for your teen to monitor the tire pressure of their car. Not only will it help them have more traction and keep them safe while on the road, but keeping your tires inflated to the proper psi can improve gas mileage and reduce tire wear. Saving you money in the long run assuming you are paying for the gas or tires on your kid’s car.

Teach your kid to recognize the symbols for the TPMS warning and teach them how to inflate their tires properly at any of the standard valve stations you can find at gas stations or car washes.

The study also concluded that car crashes were more likely as tire tread wears and diminishes. Twenty-six percent of auto crashes analyzed in the study involved vehicles with worn out tread measuring 0″ – 2/32″ depth.

Other Tips

Another good tip for your child is to help them pack an emergency roadside kit to keep in their car at al times to help them out if they ever are involved in an accident or if their car simply breaks down unexpectedly. The most common items to keep in their kit are as listed

  • Reflective vest to wear when outside the vehicle
  • Tire pressure gauge
  • Tire tread depth measuring tool
  • First aid kit
  • Matches and roadside flares
  • Oil, brake fluid and windshield washer fluid
  • Blanket
  • Flashlight and portable radio with extra batteries
  • Tool kit including screwdrivers, wrenches and a hammer
  • Jumper cables
  • Battery charging kit
  • Rags or paper towels
  • Duct tape and cutting tool (pocket knife or scissors)
  • Bottled water and nonperishable foods (dried fruit, nuts, granola bars).

Despite the best advice and the purest intentions your child will likely encounter car trouble at some point while driving. Be sure that your insurance policy includes roadside assistance and towing if your teen is behind the wheel and you are not sure you would be available during the times your child general is driving. Good luck and stay safe out there on the road!

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