The first time you drive by yourself to grab some takeout, or drive your friends to the movies, is an amazing feeling. You’re independent, no longer relying on others to get you to where you want to go. It’s a mark of growing up, and it’s also a lot of fun. But this newfound freedom comes with responsibility. Preparing yourself can keep you, and everyone else, safe on the road.
- Observe: You can never start too early. When you’re a passenger, observe other drivers, driving conditions, and traffic signs and signals. Ask questions and learn from other drivers’ mistakes and experience.
- Knowledge is power: Enrolling in a driver’s education program can make a huge difference to a new driver’s skills. Driving schools have professionals who can provide a comprehensive education. In some cases, these schools can give you high school credits or expedite the graduated licensing program. Find out if CAA offers a driving school in your community.
- Practice makes perfect: Getting driving practice in a variety of settings can help prepare you and give you the skills needed to be a good driver.
- Your car, your rules: Driving with your friends is part of the fun of getting your licence but remember that when you drive, you make the rules. If you’re not comfortable doing something, don’t do it. Your friends should respect that.
- Simplify: Driving requires 100 per cent of your attention. When you’re focusing on a task that can be daunting to learn, keep it simple. Eliminate distractions, like your phone or eating, or substances that impair you, like alcohol or drugs. Staying focused with a clear mind will keep you, your friends, and everyone else safe on the road.
Learn about more tips from CAA on how you can make getting your licence a fun and exciting adventure. Visit our website at www.caa.ca/young-drivers.