Accident prevention is the number one tool for any driver, especially new ones on the road. The earlier you learn these skills, the safer you’ll be for your life on the road.
Learning these early is actually rather crucial. In fact, 9 teens are killed every day from accidents on the road. Unfortunately, most accidents can be avoided by taking some rather simple preventative steps.
Defensive driving can save your life, the lives of others, and even save you money. Let’s talk about how to be a defensive driver.
Tips On Being A Defensive Driver: Expect The Unexpected
You can be the best driver in the world, but you’re still driving among lots of different people with lots of different driving styles. If you drive in the city a lot, you know not all of them are defensive!
The best thing you can do is plan for the worst and hope for the best! If you’re driving on a road at 30 mph and there are cars parked all along the side of the road, any one of them can pull out without a warning. Even if it would be their fault, you still don’t want to crash.
Be prepared for people to cut you off, violate traffic laws, or otherwise do the wrong thing. It’s a sad fact, but it happens all the time. You can’t control their actions, but you can control yours.
Check Your Blindspots. Then Check Again.
It isn’t unsafe to check twice, as long as you are turning your head and looking in as short of a time as possible. People can be lagging in our blindspots for longer than we like.
It isn’t just the blindspots in the back. If you’re at a stop sign, wait an extra couple of seconds to make sure there is no oncoming traffic in your blindspot between your windshield and window. Especially if your vehicle has a larger one.
Use Your Signals. Yes, Always.
Using your signal for every lane change, every turn, and every time you pull over is critical, even if you think nobody is around. Your signals are also for pedestrians, bicycles, and anyone else who may need to know what you’re doing.
Okay, it’s the middle of the night, you haven’t seen a car for miles, and you’re changing lanes. Who needs a signal, right?
Well, if you’ve done a lot of night driving, you know how commonly people speed, race, drive without headlights, or otherwise drive like they own the road. Unfortunately, because people like this exist, the rest of us need to take extra precautions and drive defensively.
Signaling every time may seem like such an insignificant step, but it can save you some legal trouble in the event of an accident.
Read The Traffic Signs
Traffic signs are not just stop, yield, and the speed limit. Traffic signs let us know about everything coming up. You may ignore “Blind Driveway” signs, thinking the odds of someone pulling out when you’re coming are slim. However, if you pass enough of them, the odds become high. Easing off the gas and preparing to potentially brake when you come around that curve could save your life.
“Children playing”, “moose crossing”, and “sharp curve” are just a small few of the other most important signs that can save a life just by simply acknowledging.
Don’t Be A Tailgater
Nobody, absolutely nobody, likes looking in their mirror to find someone riding on their bumper at 60 miles per hour. It puts a lot of added stress on the driver in front of you, who should be focused on the road in front of them, and it increases your risk of rear-ending them, which your insurance company will deem your fault.
Give plenty of room between you and the car in front of you. More than you think you need. If somebody jumped into that space, that’s fine. Again, you can only control your actions. Simply slow down and keep your distance from them, too.
Drive Slow In Bad Weather
We mean slow. Dropping 10 miles off the speed limit is often fair, but if you’re driving on an under-plowed road in the middle of a blizzard, going 20 mph in a 60 mph zone is not uncalled for.
Learning how to handle difficult weather conditions is also an excellent skill to have, but don’t get cocky. Even if you’re an expert in the snow, not everybody around you is, and someone losing control can cost you if you aren’t careful.
Nobody is perfect. Accidents happen. If you get into an accident, the best defense you can have for your driving is good legal help. If you need the right defense for your case, visit Kemp Ruge & Green Law Group and get the defense you need!
Get Off The Phone
This is the last one on the list only because the point needs to be emphasized. Texting and driving is far too common. Not only does it increase your personal risk of injury or death, but also the penalties you may face if something goes wrong.
If you get into an accident, get a ticket, or especially injure or kill a pedestrian, your phone records will be checked, and you can even face jail time, along with hefty fines.
Do not text and drive under any circumstances. Almost every time, the message can wait. If it really can’t, pull over somewhere safe and do what you need to do. If everybody did this, it would save 1.6 million accidents every year.
Be Safe On The Road
Being a defensive driver take practice and patience. The simple step of leaving early for your destination to avoid the need for speeding can go a long way to improving your safety on the road.
Just be diligent, be respectful of other cars on the road, and most importantly, be alert and prepared! To all of our readers, please stay safe on the road!