Your child wants to have a car at college next year. Whether you’ve given in and agreed to let them take one of the family cars or they’ve bought their own, it’s only normal to have some worries. You can’t watch them as closely as you do when they’re driving around Lexington.
However, you can give them some advice that will help keep them safe. You’ve already had the “no drinking and driving” and “no texting and driving” conversations. It never hurts to keep reminding them. Here are some other pieces of advice to give your child for driving in an area largely inhabited by college students.
Drive around the area when it’s not teeming with students. No matter how long you’ve been walking, biking or taking campus transportation, driving is a whole other perspective. You may have been taking shortcuts behind buildings that someone in a car can’t take, so be sure you know how to get where you’re going. GPS may not pick up on every small side street of a college campus.
Know where the crosswalks and bike lanes are. However, remember that cyclists and pedestrians don’t always abide by the rules and can appear out of nowhere.
Check out the parking lots so that if you’re driving to class, you know the best place to park. Find out how fast those lots fill up. You don’t want to be frantically searching for a parking lot (or an empty space) when you’re running late for class. (Of course, make sure you have the appropriate permits and stickers before you park anywhere on campus.)
Be prepared for other student drivers. Many may also be new to driving on campus. Some may have just gotten their driver’s license over the summer. Being a defensive driver is essential on a college campus.
Make sure that your child isn’t afraid to tell you if they’ve been involved in an accident and that your contact information is on their phone in case they end up in the hospital. If the accident was caused by another driver, be sure you take the steps necessary to hold them responsible.