11 Driving Safety
|Unfortunately, automobile accidents happen everyday. In
this article, we will discuss 11 helpful tips to make sure
you have an advantage in avoiding accidents and getting to
your destination safely.
1. The most simple rule of safe driving, sadly often goes
ignored: Always wear your seat belt! Life is unpredictable
and driving without a seat belt even for a short distance
can be very dangerous. Even if you are an experienced driver
travelling on a road you know very well, it doesn't mean
that there won't be other drivers on that same road who are
inexperienced or easily distracted; you don't want to suffer
injury due to their mistake. One of the most common excuses
for not wearing a seat belt is that the driver will be
driving at a very slow speed. Even at the very low speed of
eight kilometres per hour, a sudden stop can cause whip
lash. By wearing a seat belt you can drastically lower your
chances of whiplash or concussion if you need to make an
2. Obey the speed limit. Although some drivers would like to
believe that the speed limit was put in place to make their
life more difficult, it is truly a rule meant to save lives.
Plenty of testing goes into determining what is a safe speed
for driving on any given road. If you find yourself running
behind schedule, remember it is better to arrive late than
to have an accident and never arrive!
3. Do everything you can to avoid being distracted. Before
pulling out of your driveway find a radio station that you
like to listen to, so you won't be switching stations while
driving. Adjust your air conditioning to a comfortable level
before taking off, so there's no need to be messing with air
conditioning modules or air vents while driving on the road.
Taking your eyes off the road even for a couple seconds
could be detrimental to your safety or the safety of others.
Waiting until you have arrived at your destination to eat,
put on makeup, or send a text is a much better option than
doing so while driving.
4. Distance yourself from other vehicles. Though we can't
control the actions of others, we can take precautions to
not become a victim of their mishaps. By distancing yourself
from other vehicles as much as possible, you can have a
bigger safety cushion surrounding your automobile. You can
more easily avoid crashing into a vehicle in front of you if
they were to suddenly slam on breaks and by avoiding driving
side by side with other cars, you can avert being
side-swiped if another car were to come into your lane.
5. Be rested. Not having a proper night's rest plays some of
a role in the majority of car accidents that occur. Not
having enough sleep will decrease how fast you react to the
unexpected occurrences you may encounter. Being well rested
also can help prevent road rage and highway hypnosis. If you
feel yourself getting sleepy, pull off the road and take a
quick fifteen to twenty minute nap. A small rest could be
very crucial to your safety.
6. Backup carefully. Drivers often feel pressured to hurry
up and vacate a parking spot as soon as they return to their
vehicle. Sometimes its a self-induced pressure to rush, and
other times it may be an irate driver of another vehicle
persistently honking their horn because they want your spot.
Whatever the case, it is best to backup slowly. Check your
mirrors and blind spot before pulling out and be on the look
out for drivers who might also be backing up at the same
time you are. Be sure to check for pedestrians as well. It
is better to take your time than to injury yourself or
others by rushing.
7. Park in places that you feel comfortable entering and
exiting. Be realistic about your parking skills. If you are
not an experienced parallel parker there is no shame in
driving a little farther to find a spot that you can pull
into and out of the way you are used to. If you are unsure
if your car will fit in a tight space, take a little longer
to find one you are positive you can confidently get in and
out of without denting your vehicle or another person's.
8. Leave ahead of time. Some of the worst driving mistakes
made are due to rushed decision making. If you have an
important scheduled meeting to get to, it is best to plan to
arrive thirty minutes ahead of time. That way, if you run
into traffic delays you aren't tempted to drive at unsafe
speeds or cut in between cars to hurriedly switch lanes.
There's no harm in showing up early if you don't get slowed
down by stop lights or traffic, either.
9. Reduce your speed when the weather and environment are
not ideal. Rain is probably the most frequent weather
condition that may warrant driving at a slower speed. Roads
can become slick, and pot holes or dips in the road can hold
water causing you to hydroplane if you are driving too fast.
Paved streets are often the most slippery when rain first
begins to fall. Oil from cars falls down and dries up on the
roads over time and the rainfall causes it to liquefy once
again and can make the roads slippery, even when driving on
tires with good traction. Rain also reduces visibility, so
by slowing down you give yourself more time to react to the
traffic around you.
10. Be aware of your surroundings. Before taking off for a
drive, make sure your mirrors and seat are adjusted so that
you have the best view possible when utilizing your rear and
side view mirrors. Even with them being in the best
position, you will still likely have a blind spot. It's the
main reason why you need to check your rear view and side
view mirrors even when you are moving forward and not
backing up. This will alert you to other drivers that may be
outside your field of vision before changing lanes. Having
your radio at low level will also be helpful in making sure
you arrive at your destination safely. You want to make sure
you can easily hear police and ambulance sirens, horns
honking, and train horns so that you can prepare yourself
for what is coming up, even if you cannot see anything yet.
11. Take a few minutes to research a destination you are
unfamiliar with. These days many drivers rely heavily on
global positioning systems to guide them to their
destinations and although they are extremely helpful, they
are not always 100% accurate. By taking a few minutes to go
online and confirm exactly where your destination is
located, it can save you some anxiety and help keep your
eyes on the road. The GPS may say your destination is .5
kilometres on the left, but if you did your research you
might could identify a landmark that would clue you in to
the exact location. Instead of taking your eyes off the road
for a longer period of time trying to estimate where . 5
kilometres from you is, it would be better to positively be
able to say, "Alright, there's the shopping center I saw
online. The dentist's office will be in there." No frantic
searching for the correct place means you can focus on
driving more safely.
We hope you find these driving tips insightful and wish you
safe and happy travels!