For any parents of teenagers, the time for them to get their lisence can be a worrisome and nerve racking experience. Young drivers are put on the road with little real life situation experiences. Sure, they log hours in drivers, they log more hours with their parents. But the fact is drivers never stop learning. One of the harder driving tasks to truly master is highway travel. It involves high speed, lane changes, and often distracted drivers who are trying to get to their destination as fast as possible. So, as parents, make sure you go over the rules of the highway. Hear are some good guidelines to teach your kids.
The On Ramp
A freeway ramp gives you a very short distance, on a sometimes very curved sloping road, to reach freeway speeds. Considering this, it is important for new driver to remember they must quickly accelerate on the ramp to reach upper speeds before merging. Use the merge lane, and your driver mirror, to smoothly enter the freeway. The keyword is “smoothly.” If you’re not already traveling at the speed of traffic by the time you reach the merge lane, you did it wrong. When merging into slow-moving traffic, use the patented “you go, I go” technique. It’s a simple and courteous way to keep things flowing, yet not many people bother to employ it: Watch the car in front of you merge; before you merge, let the guy next to you creep up behind him.
Make sure teen drivers go by this rule: stay in the farthest right lane unless you have to pass a slower motorist. When traffic is light, your driving time should be spent in the far right lane of the freeway. Drive in the middle lane when the right lane fills up with slower-moving cars. But never travel in the far left lane unless passing a vehicle in that center lane. Watch out for cars merging onto the freeway. The should yield to oncoming traffic, but if they don’t it is ok to switch over to the middle lane to go around them, and then return to the right lane.
Don’t Hold Up the Left Lane
You may be passing someone, but there will likely always be someone going faster than you. If you are in the left lane, and see a vehicle gaining on you, know that this happens. You may get a quick flash of the lights if you don’t move over. Don’t take this personally; it is just a gentle reminder to the slower driver to return to the middle lane. Just teach your teens, move over as soon as it’s safe and let drivers going faster go by.
Also, the left lane is not the place to cruise it’s the place to pass.
Teach Zero Distractions
Distractions while driving are plentiful, but there are ways to limit this. Keep both hands on the wheel. Be aware of your surroundings, is there a car behind you? Beside you? Will you be taking an exit ramp soon? And of course, no cell phones and no texting. Teach teen drivers the rules of the highway and you are off to a good start for safe driving.
Posted by pfiorini on Mar 9 2010 in Driving Tips