Your teen is driving now? Congratulations or apologies, either way. It's not the most eagerly anticipated parental role--getting involved in a teenager’s required supervised driving practice--but now, at least, it can be a little less stressful and more productive when it comes to parking the car.
A good lesson in parking can be a big money-saver. The statistics from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) bear this out, showing that about 14 percent of all vehicle collisions involving damage claims occur in parking lots. But it’s not just vehicle damage that can result from improper parking. The IIHS study also found that more than 50 percent of injury accidents occur when backing up in non-residential parking areas.
Clearly, new teen drivers – as well as many parents and other adults – can use a little help learning safe parking procedures. A free, downloadable parking guide, How to Park: the Must-Read Manual for Teens, was created by the International Parking Institute (IPI), in conjunction with the AAA Mid-Atlantic and the Mid-Atlantic Foundation for Safety and Education.
Included in the colorful and easy-to-read manual are useful tips on how to avoid vehicle crashes and parking tickets, as well as clear instructions and diagrams on every type of parking maneuver. Chapters cover the following topics:
- Eight parking basics – park between the lines in one space, curb cuddling, parking away from traffic and five more.
- The Dirty Dozen – parking no-no’s – such as never parking in a travel lane, crosswalks, in front of “no parking” signs, next to curbs painted yellow red and more.
- Avoiding a pain in the glass (storefront crashes) – how to keep your foot and pedal in sync and other safety tips when parking by a storefront.
- Disabled parking spaces – the rules
- Seven ways to avoid a parking ticket – bring plenty of quarters, pay by phone, park in a garage and so on.
- Behind the wheel – includes diagrams on how to parallel, angle, reverse and perpendicular park, pulling in and backing out, what to do when boxed in, parking on a hill and other tricky parking maneuvers.
- Sustainability and parking for the environment
- High-tech parking – about mobile apps, websites and social media aids to parking.
- Avoiding heartbreaking parking nightmare
Tip for parents: Check out the guide yourself before you give it to your teen driver. Then go out and practice parking together.