Driving is a very convenient way to reach your destination quickly and efficiently. You tighten your seat belt, turn on the car and step on the pedal. Of course, driving isn’t as cut and dry as it sounds. It requires a lot of skills and can sometimes be risky. Vehicle accidents are a common occurrence and even the most experienced drivers can become victims. While no one can guarantee the driver’s safety, the driver can follow certain protocols to minimize the risks. Here are some driving safety knowledge that every driver should posses:
Be attentive and cut off distractions
Attentiveness to the road is a key factor in determining your safety. Yet, most people are complacent about reducing distractions around them. Most of this is due to the bad habits they developed while driving. It can be music playing in your car, the radio, phone calls or unnecessary phone usage, talking or arguing with other passengers. A lot of these things can chip away your concentration from the road. So, turn off any music or radio. Avoid using the phone, keep it in silent mode, and try not to strike conversations requiring too much thinking. If a phone call is urgent, pull up your car and initiate the call.
Cutting off distractions can help you focus on the more important things on the road. Look ahead for the cars and the traffic on the road and assess the situation. Check your mirrors and blind spots to inspect your surroundings. This will give you a good idea of what everyone is doing and if a driver is trying to communicate through their lights. You can also focus on traffic lights and road signs better this way. Failing to cut off distractions or maintaining the proper can prove to be very dangerous on the road.
Safety regulations and traffic laws
Drivers must familiarize themselves with every safety regulation and traffic law, yet they may be unaware of a few. Some drivers may have forgotten or overlooked these lesser-known but important rules. Moreover, new drivers are unaware of several other unwritten driving etiquettes. Depending on the region you live in and vehicle type, many of the rules can vary. Though there is so much disparity in these rules and laws, it is crucial to know them. It’s also equally important to know how vehicle lights help to communicate with other drivers on the road. So, if you are new to driving, participate in an online groups and forums to learn about lesser-known traffic laws.
Basic maintenance knowledge goes a long way in keeping a vehicle healthy. A healthy vehicle, in return, will ensure you don’t get into unexpected trouble on the road. To keep your vehicle healthy, you need to know when to perform maintenance on the vehicle. While it’s mentioned in the owner’s manual, your own insight, experience and the vehicle’s age can affect it to an extent. You can learn and perform the basic repairs regarding the fluid change, tires, brakes, lights, air filters, cleaning, etc. Regular maintenance can extend your car’s life and can reduce expenses in the long run. Additionally, it’s important to know what sort of equipment and emergency tools you should have in your car if you get stranded without help in a rural area.
Use a better route
Usually, there are many routes available to reach your desired destination and some are better than others. Planning ahead will familiarize you with the route, and hence, you can drive more safely. This is even more useful if you spend most of your days commuting or traveling the same route. A good route is one where there is low traffic. Your car won’t get stuck in low traffic and safety is much higher because of fewer vehicles. Good routes also include roads with little to no turning which enables us to see the incoming vehicles clearly. Busy spots and obstructive turns are often the reason for accidents, so it’s best to avoid them whenever possible. Even if that means you need to make a few detours and could arrive at your destination a little late. Because It’s better to be late than dead.
Knowing when to drive
If you are feeling unwell or stressed, it’s best to avoid driving. This is because when you are unwell or stressed, you can’t be as sharp as when you’d be feeling normal. You might brush it off and continue driving, but it’s not a good idea to do so. With reduced senses and poor reflexes, your chances of getting into an accident will increase significantly. When you are performing poorly yourself, you shouldn’t expect to perform any better on the wheel. For the same reasons, you should also avoid driving when under the influence of alcohol or certain medication.
Driving safely isn’t just to protect yourself and your passengers. Because you share the road with other people like drivers and pedestrians, their safety becomes your responsibility. Carelessness isn’t excusable when you are driving on the road. Therefore, for the sake of everyone’s safety, you must drive with the proper safety measures. Learn defensive driving, if you want to minimize the accident risks even more.