It’s all fun and a chorus of One Direction songs until the car in front of you slams on its brakes unexpectedly and you slam on your brakes and hold your breath. Sound familiar? Yeah, me too. Among the fleeting things racing through your mind—is everyone OK? Did my handbag spill all over the floor? What is wrong with that idiot in front of me?—is the explanation you will give to the mom of your daughter’s best friend. At least everyone was unhurt. This time.
We never expect these things to happen, and yet they do all the time. As careful as we all are with our precious cargo in tow, we need to be prepared with our insurance, too. It tends to be one of those things that you look at very closely when you first get coverage, and then completely ignore until something happens and you need it. Especially if you have kids, it’s important to be safe behind the wheel and know that you’re financially protected, too, if there is a problem.
It becomes even more important when you consider how often we’re driving around with our children’s friends. We need to be sure that everyone is safe, starting with cutting out those unsafe behaviors that are so tempting. A new Liberty Mutual Insurance study shows that parents aren’t as safe as they should be behind the wheel.
An incredible 79% of parents admit to unsafe behavior while driving. The most common risky behaviors are talking on the phone (42%) and eating and drinking, (42%) with speeding (22%) and texting (%10) rounding out the list.
Safety begins when you open the car door
Possibly one of the most frightening figures from the study was that 20% of parents say they have driven with other people’s kids not properly secured in the vehicle. If you don’t have the right car seat, or you don’t have enough seatbelts, then you simply shouldn’t have that many kids in the car.
The best way to be sure your kids are safe is to do the right thing from the moment you open the car door. If you’re unsure, then you can find out more about using car seats and seat belts correctly at SaferCar.gov.
Also, talk to your kids about safety and lead by example so that when they’re old enough to drive, they’re safe at the wheel, too. If you just can’t help picking up that phone, then put it in the glove box and encourage your teen driver to do the same.
Review your auto insurance policy often
And finally, take a look at that auto insurance policy. Accidents do happen, and with our most precious cargo in the back seat, we need to be sure that we’re not setting ourselves up for potentially devastating legal and financial costs. If you haven’t looked at your policy in awhile, then it’s time to give it a look and find out if you’ve got the right coverage.
Safe behaviors behind the wheel and the right insurance policy for when accidents inevitably happen work hand-in-hand to protect you and your family.