Caution Is the Mother of Wisdom: 10 Defensive Driving Strategies to Prevent a Disaster
Learning the basics of defensive driving can help you to avoid crashes. Auto accidents happen, but the last thing you want to be is the cause of it. Not everyone drives well, so one more safe driver on the road is always helpful. But if something does go wrong, drivers can always find help to resolve legal issues. Do some research or go to reputable law websites for more info.
10. Avoid Road Rage
Getting angry on the road will only incite the anger of those around you. Road rage has a domino effect, so slamming on your brakes or honking your horn wildly is not a good driving strategy. Make it a point to not be an instigator when driving. The other drivers are strangers that you’ll never see again. Why let one bad driver raise your blood pressure? If you give in to road rage, mistakes are more likely to happen.
9. You Have Blinkers, So Use Them
It seems simple enough, but blinkers are sometimes the forgotten signal. Other people on the road are not psychic, so they have no idea when you plan to turn. Use your signals often to let the people behind you know that you’re turning. It also alerts the drivers in front of you so that accidents are less likely to happen. Using the turn signals is 100% a function of driver responsibility. Not using it shows that you have no road awareness and are a danger to drivers around you.
8. Do You Have A Safety Device Installed?
Safety ratings have been a major thing for years. Check the safety rating of a car and then invest in the appropriate safety devices. Child restraints fall in this category and can save lives. Airbags should be active on both the driver and passenger side. Vehicles without airbag warning lights are dangerous to drive in. If your car has it, the backup sensing system stops you from crashing into objects. This is a small sampling of low-tech options that aim to keep the driver and all passengers safe from harm.
7. Yielding Can Save Your Life
In unfamiliar territory, a driver has to make the decision about whether or not they have the right of way. Whenever you’re in doubt, always yield to the other driver. It is not about being polite to other drivers on the road. Yielding is the choice of drivers that want to avoid a collision due to confusion. Failure to yield cases are a slam dunk for any lawyer. Make sure that you are on the receiving end of a collision rather than being the cause.
Doing multiple things at once while driving is bad form. Technology has made it easier to do these things using voice control. But make no mistake, it is still a distraction. Drivers with modern cars still get into accidents for small things like using the volume controls on the steering wheel. You don’t have to be a robot, but try to limit the amount of mental focus you take away from actual driving. It’s not only your life on the line, but millions of others.
5. Buckle Up
Seatbelts save lives when an accident happens on the road. It is not a guarantee that buckling up will save your life. But it is such a deciding factor in fatal deaths that laws were passed to make motorists buckle up. It is illegal and dangerous to drive without a seatbelt. Current figures by the National Safety Council lowers the risk of injury to fifty percent when a seatbelt is worn.
4. There Are Other Drivers On The Road
Your preparation when driving has no effect on the other drivers. Sometimes there is no avoiding a bad driver. You can’t predict when someone is going to make a bad move, so be cautious. Recognizing that a stranger’s bad driving is out of your hand should help you relax. A nervous driver is more likely to make a mistake under stressful conditions. Stay calm, even when other drivers on the road make you feel uncomfortable.
3. Red Means Stop
It’s the universal driving color for a stop when you see it on a light or on a sign. Most intersection collisions are the cause of a driver running a red light. Unfortunately, this isn’t as simple as it sounds. Try not to race the yellow light when you see it. Yellow means slow down, not speed up. There are also some drivers that speed past stop signs for their own personal reasons. If you are on the opposite side and see this happening, yield to them. Another driver running the stop sign is not a signal for you to speed up and continue your right of way.
2. Go The Speed Limit
Speed limits exist to help out drivers, so follow them within reason. Going slower than the speed limit won’t make you any friends. And in some areas, going slower than the speed limit is illegal. Going much faster than the speed limit will make you lose control of your car. There is no amount of time you can make up for by going faster in a car, at least not safely.
1. Don’t Follow Too Closely
Over a quarter of all traffic accidents happen because of tailgating. This is a pet peeve of many drivers worldwide. Tailgating another driver can cause road rage in the worst of situations. Rear end collisions are avoidable by following the lead time rule. In bad weather, increase that time so that you have better stopping distance. Remember, if you hit a motorist from behind, you are at fault.
Don’t ignore these simple tips since they can end up saving your life. Driving is one of the most dangerous things you can do- when it is done wrong. Increase your chances of a safe trip by being prepared, knowledgeable and aware of your surroundings.