Top 10 Steps to Keep Your Teen from Driving Drunk

Alcohol and teenage drivers can be a deadly combination. As a parent, keeping your teen from driving drunk is a high priority.

In this Drunk Drivers Rights guide we outline the top 10 steps you can take to reduce the risk that your teen will make the decision to drink and drive.

Limit Access to Alcohol

Many teenagers obtain alcohol in their own home. If you have alcohol in your house, keep it locked and out of the reach of underage children.

Educate about the Dangers

Learn the facts about fatalities, injuries and other dangers of drunk driving. Give your teens statistics that show how often drinking and driving leads to injury and death for those involved. For example, let them know that 40% of all alcohol-related traffic deaths involve teenagers who have been drinking.  Help your kids understand that drinking and driving can have painful consequences that might affect them the rest of their lives.

Inform your Teens about Rules and Consequences

Your teenager should know that it is illegal for any person under 21 to drive after consuming alcohol. All states have zero-tolerance laws for underage drinkers. Let them know that if they are stopped by police for reasonable suspicion and have any alcohol in their system, they will lose their license. Inform them that if you suspect they’ve been drinking, you’ll take away their license. If you believe they might drink and drive anyway, let them know you’ll report them to the police because you care about them and want to save them from the consequences of drinking and driving.

Get a Handheld Breath Tester

Breathalyzers for home use are available. As a last resort, you might need to test your teen before handing them the keys to the car.

Drinking and driving can result in death or serious injury. It can leave life-long scars. Being proactive in preventing your child from driving while under the influence of alcohol is an important part of good parenting.

Never Drink and Drive

Practicing what you preach is a great example to teens. Refrain from drinking excessively and never drive while under the influence.

Talk about Peer Pressure

Discuss with your kids practical steps for handling peer pressure. Give them tools to say “no” and to stand by their convictions.

Know their Friends

Even if you limit access to alcohol, the parents of your teenager’s friends may not. The best way to ensure their well-being is to know their friends and to discourage them from spending time with those you believe might present a problem.

Get Help for a Teenage Drinker

If you have reason to believe that your child has started to drink, seek treatment for them. Consult your family physician or look for a treatment center with an alcohol rehabilitation program for teens.

Encourage Involvement in Organizations Such as SADD

Students Against Drunk Driving is an organization that gives teens the tools they need to avoid drinking and driving.

Develop Your Parenting Skills

If you feel like you can’t control your teen or are an ineffective parent, get help for your parenting skills. There are many outstanding books and video programs on parenting. Some have a religious perspective while others are secular, so you can find one that reflects your outlook.

Learn more about DUI attorneys, Federal DUI laws, State DUI laws, and terms relating to drunk driving , by visiting our helpful articles and guides.