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What should teens know about defensive driving?

If you have a teenaged driver in Pennsylvania, chances are you’re concerned for your child’s safety. Not all drivers abide by the rules of the road, and negligent behavior behind the wheel endangers everyone. While you can’t control the actions of others, these tips from can help your teen utilize defensive driving techniques.

Pay attention to your surroundings

It’s easy to lose focus behind the wheel, especially when surrounded by distractions. However, when you fail to pay attention to your surroundings you run the risk of missing dangerous drivers, poor conditions, and possible road hazards. To ensure safety, continually check your mirrors and scan the road ahead of you. When changing lanes, be sure to look over your shoulder to check your blind spot.

Maintain a safe speed

Driving at high rates of speed makes it much harder to control your vehicle. It can also lead to severe injuries and property damage if you are involved in an accident. Abide by the posted speed limit at all times and adjust your speed when faced with unfavorable road conditions. Also, try to stay aware of the speeds of other drivers. If you notice the vehicles around you slowing down, it makes sense to follow suit.

Keep your distance

It’s recommended that all drivers keep at least 3 to 4 seconds between their vehicles and the vehicles they’re following. This allows enough time to stop completely in the event an accident occurs in front of you. Additionally, when the weather is bad this distance should be increased. Rain and snow impede a vehicle’s ability to stop, which can easily lead to a crash when conditions are poor.