(260) 494-0728

52 weekly talking points

(A year's worth!)

Pick one of the following "5-Alive" discussion points to talk about with your teen once a week, every week. By discussing one of these safe-driving topics every week, you will reduce your teen's risk of an accident.

  1. Do you know how much a speeding ticket costs, in fines and increased insurance premiums over the next 3-4 years?
  2. Do you know that cell phones are linked with distracted driving, which is a leading cause of preventable crashes? 
  3. Do you always wear your seatbelt, even on short trips? Do your passengers?
  4. Do you personally know anyone who has driven a car after drinking some alcohol?
  5. Do you know how to correct your vehicle if it slides on ice?
  6. How loud do you play music? How often could you hear a horn or siren with your stereo on?
  7. What do you do when you approach a railroad crossing?
  8. Do you watch out for bicyclers and joggers in the spring and summer?
  9. How fast do you drive through neighborhood streets where kids might be playing?
  10. Did you see the article in the paper or on TV about the local crash last night?
  11. Do you know what to do if you encounter dense fog? What if you are unable to see the car in front of you?
  12. Do you tailgate? How do you know? Do you use the two-second rule?
  13. What time of day do you use your headlights?
  14. How low do you let your gas tank get? You should fill it when it gets to 1/4 a tank.
  15. When should you use your brights?
  16. Have you ever picked up a hitchhiker? Do you know anyone that has picked up a hitchhiker?
  17. How often do you check your oil? Do you know that your car engine can blow up if there is no oil in the car?
  18. Do you always reduce your speed in construction zones?
  19. Do you always lock all car doors when you drive especially at night?
  20. Do you always check your surroundings before getting out of your car? This is especially important at night in poorly lit areas.
  21. What would you do if your car died? On a city street? On a highway? At night?
  22. Do you have jumper cables in your trunk? Do you know how to use them?
  23. Do you have a map of Indiana/Allen County in your car? What will you do if you get lost?
  24. How fast are you supposed to drive through standing water? How deep is too deep to drive through?
  25. Do you know how to maneuver your car out of snow if it gets stuck?
  26. Do you always stop when a school bus is stopped? Are you always cautious of students walking across the street?
  27. What do you do if you get into an accident? A minor fender bender or severe crash? Make sure you get the name of the other person, his insurance company and call the police to file an accident report.
  28. Do you always have your license on you and your insurance information when you drive?
  29. Do you know your license plate number? Do you know when your plates expire?
  30. Do you know that drowsy driving causes many preventable fatalities and injuries each year? Do you know the signs of fatigue? If you are tired pull over and take a 20-minute nap.
  31. Do you have an ice scraper in your car? Do you always wait until your windshield is completely cleared and defrosted before attempting to drive?
  32. Where is your spare key? Who will have access to it if you lock your keys in the car?
  33. What happens if you get a flat tire? Do you have a spare tire? Do you know where to go to fix it?
  34. How often do you need to change the oil in your car? Do you change it at the recommended times?
  35. Are your tires properly inflated to the correct pressure?
  36. Where are your hazard lights located? When would you use them?
  37. How often do you run yellow lights?
  38. Do you always come to a complete stop, not a rolling stop, at stop signs? Even when it seems like there is no one around?
  39. Do you know that each passenger increases your risk of an accident? How many passengers do you normally drive with?
  40. Do you know that driving at night is more dangerous than driving during the day? Visibility is reduced and you need to be more cautious.
  41. Do you have anti-lock brakes? Do you know if you need to pump them or hold them down?
  42. When should you use your parking brake?
  43. What is your normal speed when driving through a parking lot?
  44. Do you always adjust your mirrors and seat if someone else has driven?
  45. What do you do if your car starts to go off the road? How do you prevent overcorrecting?
  46. Do you reduce your speed below the speed limit during dangerous weather conditions such as rain?
  47. Do you have a pair of sunglasses in the car for sunny days so you can see clearly?
  48. Are you a safe passenger? Do you tell your friends to pay attention to the road and help them watch for traffic hazards?
  49. Do you always wait your turn at four-way stops? What do you do if someone takes your turn?
  50. Are you cautious of road rage? Are you careful not to anger others by cutting them off, etc.?
  51. Do you know what to do if a police car, fire truck or ambulance needs to get through? Where do you pull over, how long do you stop?
  52. Who do you call if you need to get your car towed? Are you and your family members of a roadside assistance program?

Do not stop talking about safe driving practices with your teen, even after you have discussed all of these. Remember to talk to your teen 5 minutes every week. Use friendly reminders of previous talking topics or things you witness or see on TV as a guide for a new topic. Don’t worry about being redundant; worry about saving your teen’s life.