If you teenager has now reached the point that they are driving alone, you need to make sure they are ready just in case an emergency happens. Even though you will still worry about them, this may put you a little more at ease.
Make sure your teenager has the number of a towing service in their vehicle. They should have more than one just in case the one they call is busy and will not get to them in a while. Put the phone numbers in an envelope along with enough money to pay the driver. Tell them to put roadside flares around their vehicle if it is at night to alert other drivers.
Most tow companies today take credit cards, as well as cash. If you do not want your teen to carry around a credit card, purchase a prepaid card with enough money on it to pay a tow truck driver.
Some tow companies work with certain repair shops. If your teenager's car is broken down and taken to one of these shops, the tow bill may be added to the repair bill.
Put a repair kit in the trunk, and teach your teenager how to use the items in it. The kit should contain things like
- First aid kit
- 2 quarts of oil
- 1 gallon of antifreeze
- Jumper cables
- Brake fluid
- Tire pressure gauge
- Tire inflator
- Old rags
- Can of cola
Teach your teenager some basic repairs they can likely do on their own. For example, show them how to change a tire and/or check the pressure and put air in their tire. They should also know how to use a pair of jumper cables, how to check and put oil in their car, how to check the antifreeze and add some if they are low, and how to check and add brake fluid, if needed. Walk them through how to do each of these things, and then let them tell you in detail how they would do it without you helping them.
Consider taking your teenager to a mechanic, who can show them many tips and tricks they can do on the road. For example, if there is corrosion on the battery terminals, they can be cleaned by pouring a can of soda over them to remove it.
Also, put a full bag of cat litter in the car. If your teenager is stuck in the snow on a slick road, they can put some cat litter in front and behind their wheels to give them some traction.