Potential Traffic & Road Hazards

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Lesson 12: Don’t Assume You Have the Right of Way

Lesson 12: Don’t Assume You Have the Right of Way

This practice drive is a reminder to teens that we cannot assume drivers will always follow traffic laws or behave in a certain way.

1. The dangers
Some drivers are in a hurry and grumpy. Some are impaired. Some are on the phone or texting. Just because the law says people should do things does not mean they will.

For instance, traffic experts find that drivers who text or talk on phones, whether hand-held or hands-free, can blast through intersections and not notice stop signs, red lights or stopped cars in front of them.

2. Be aware of other drivers
The goal of this lesson is for teens to drive while you spot potentially dangerous drivers. Then trade places and have them point out the same while you are driving.

  • Ask teens to scan the road. They should keep their eyes moving so they see ahead, around and behind their vehicle.
  • They should check the mirrors every three–five seconds.
  • Ask teens to anticipate potential hazards and ask themselves what they would do if a driver did not follow traffic laws.
  • Practicing these skills will help teens focus and anticipate others’ unsafe driving.