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Driving tips


  • Always wear your seat belt--and make sure all passengers buckle up, too.
  • Adjust your car's headrest to a height behind your head--not your neck--to minimize whiplash in case you're in an accident.
  • Never try to fit more people in the car than you have seatbelts for them to use.
  • Obey the speed limits, Going too fast gives you less time to stop or react. Excess speed is one of the main causes of teenage accidents.
  • Don't run red lights.
  • Use turn signals to indicate your intention to turn or to change lanes. Turn it on to give the cars behind you enough time to react before you take the action. Also, make sure the signals turns off after you've completed the action.
  • When light turns green, make sure intersection clears before you go.
  • Don't drive like you own the road; drive like you own the car.
  • Make sure your windshield is clean. At sun rise and sun set, light reflecting off your dirty windshield can momentarily blind you from seeing what's going on.
  • Drive into your garage straight, not on an angle. Another teen thought her car would straighten out before she got inside, but instead she dented the car and broke the molding on the garage.
  • Make sure your car has gas in it. Don't ride around with the gauge on empty--who knows where you might get stranded.
  • Don't drink and drive, and don't ride with anyone who has been drinking. Call parents or friends to take you home if you need a ride.
  • Don't take drugs or drive if you've taken any. Don't ride with anyone who has been using drugs. Even some over the counter drugs can make you drowsy. Check label for warnings.


  • Turn your headlights on anytime you need to turn your windshield wipers on--in rain, fog, sleet, freezing rain, or snow. It will help your visibility--and also help other drivers see you. (It's now the law in Maryland that you have to turn your lights on whenever you need to keep your windshield wipers on.)
  • If driving a white car during snow fall or after the snow has fallen, your car may be camouflaged by the snow. So turn on your headlights and make it easier for other drivers to see you.
  • In winter, keep an ice scraper with a brush in your car in case it snows or sleets. Also check that you have wiper fluid/de-icier in your car. If it gets messy while you are out, these will come in handy.
  • Double or triple the space you normally leave between you and the next car in wet weather. You'll need even more space to stop (up to ten times as much space) on slick roads. For more exact recommendations on stopping distances, check the chart on drive and stay alive site
  • Brake gently
  • Make sure your exhaust tail pipe is clear if you've had to dig your car out of snow or ice or if you've backed into a snow bank. If your tail pipe is blocked you could get sick or die from carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • When driving on slippery surfaces like ice or snow use gentle pressure on the accelerator pedal when starting. If your wheels start to spin, let up on the accelerator until traction returns.
  • Check that windshield washer works-you may need it in snow and sleet.
  • Watch out for severe weather warnings before you drive. If a strong storm come on while you're on the road and it's raining too hard to see, try to find a safe place to pull over until the worst of the rain is over. If you see a tornado coming your way, safely experts suggest you find shelter or if that's not possible, then get out of car and find a ditch to take cover in, protecting your head and neck. It's hard to outrun a tornado.
  • Listen to radio traffic reports and adjust your travel plans accordingly. (From *Drive Right book)
  • Keep windows and windshield clear. Make sure wipers are working. (*DR)
  • Leave a window open a little bit to keep windshield from fogging up and to give you fresh air. (*DR)
  • Watch for danger spots ahead. You've probably heard that bridges and overpasses may freeze before the roads do. (*DR)
  • When starting out in bad weather, test your brakes to see how far it takes you to stop. This tip was sent in by someone who didn't do this and ended up wrecking her car. She also called her dad on his car phone to tell him about the accident--and he was so upset, he wrecked his car, too. So her second tip is not to tell your parents that you've wrecked the car while they are driving.
  • If you are stuck in ice or snow, try putting your floor mats under the edge of the tires to give them traction.
  • Don't use cruise control in wet or slippery conditions. The cruise control may apply more throttles if the drive wheels start to slip.

Stress less Parallel Parking

owner and driving instructor, shares some of her parking tips


To parallel park successfully, you need a space about 4-6 feet longer than your car. Then, it’s all about timing!

  1. Use your indicator to signal a right turn*. Stop to the side of the front car (the car you are parking behind), so that the cars are about even and about an arm’s length apart (20-26”).
  2. While looking over your right shoulder, start backing slowly, and then start turning the wheel to the right. Aim toward the right rear corner of the space.
  3. When your front seat is in line with the rear bumper of the front car, stop and turn the steering wheel one revolution to the left to straighten the tires. Continue backing at this angle until your right front fender just clears the left rear fender of the front car. (At this point, your left rear bumper will be in line with the left front bumper of the back car.)
  4. Quickly turn the steering wheel to the left and finish reversing into the parking spot. Looking over your left shoulder during this part of the maneuver may help you align with the rear car – or use your rear view mirror.
  5. To straighten out, turn the steering wheel one revolution to the right before pulling forward.

Perfecting your skill is a matter of hand, eye, and foot coordination – and timing. Practice this maneuver repeatedly, slowly, until you are comfortable, then you can add more speed. Use an area that’s not busy, such as a parking lot, or a wide residential street so you won’t have to rush. You can use markers (cones, stanchions, lines) before trying this with real cars.

These are instruction for parallel parking on the right-hand side of the road. On one-way streets, where left-side parking is possible, just reverse the left and right turns.


Always wear your seatbelts.
Every time that you re-fuel, check your oil and other fluid levels.
Don't talk on a cell phone while driving.
It is a good habit to constantly check rear view mirrors and look ahead.
As a safety conscious driver you should always be aware of your surroundings.

Tel: (213) 747-2132