You may have personally experienced or seen videos of bad drivers ignoring the traffic rules and putting others’ lives at risk. For a few, driving can seem like just hitting the pedal, swerving the steering wheel and switching gears. However, driving is more than just knowing how to operate the vehicle. Many other things come into consideration to qualify you as a good driver. No matter how prominent or subtle, all of these listed things should work in conjunction to make yourself a good driver. Even though you may have the experience to drive properly, there is always room for improvement. So, let’s look at various things that you can do to make yourself a good driver.
Apply defensive driving techniques
Defensive driving techniques aren’t a written set of rules. Instead, they mean driving responsibly with common sense. While this might consist of obvious things, many people don’t make an effort to follow them thoroughly. Things like keeping your eyes on the road, knowing when to overtake, checking your surroundings, avoiding distractions, wearing seat belts, etc., are a few common things to consider. Yet, accidents happen daily because people fail to follow these basic things. Being alert can help you avoid any possible accidents. Checking your surroundings will give you an idea of how the traffic will behave and anything unusual. Avoiding distractions like using a smartphone or playing music will help you focus more on the road. Wearing seat belts will protect you against accidents, and avoiding driving under the influence will save you from possible accidents. Implementing defensive driving techniques is easy; you don’t need any additional tools or equipment since these are just about using common sense. Defensive driving can protect you, your passengers, pedestrians and fellow motorists on the road.
Obey traffic laws and regulations
Needless to emphasize the importance of traffic laws, accidents occur every day because of this negligence. To be a good driver, you must learn and properly follow all your country/region’s traffic laws. As a responsible driver, you need to obey traffic laws and avoid violating them at all costs, not just for fear of punishment but for the sake of everyone’s safety. Some people believe that breaking small laws here and there is okay, and there is little risk. Over time, as they keep repeating it, they get even more encouraged to keep repeating it. Eventually, their luck runs out, and that is how they get into an accident. Just because you got away with it a few times doesn’t mean you will get away every time. Therefore, the best course of action is to be a law-abiding citizen and follow the traffic laws. There are also unwritten rules and etiquette commonly shared by drivers that you should be aware of. Moreover, it’s also important to respect and follow road signs.
Understand car lights and their meaning
Cars are equipped with various lights around them and have two primary functions: illumination and communication. Your headlights and fog lights are designed for illumination purposes, whereas the rest of the lights are designed for communication purposes. Knowing when to use which lights will ensure you don’t confuse other motorists on the road. For example, the headlights have two different types: low beam and high beam. Using high beams in areas with high traffic can blind the oncoming traffic and increase the chances of an accident. Likewise, it’s also important to know which light to use to communicate when you are about to take a certain action on the road like turning, overtaking, braking, etc. If you fail to use the lights properly, other drivers can misunderstand your intent and collide with you or others on the road. Proper illumination ensures you can safely navigate the road ahead during poor lighting conditions or bad weather. Proper communication can maintain a smooth flow of information so everyone on the road can travel and maneuver seamlessly without the fear of accidents. Thus, knowing when to use certain lights and communicating through them fluently can make you a good driver.
Take good care of your car
A good driver keeps good care of their car. It goes without saying that cars deteriorate over time and need regular servicing. However, people can be stingy and delay servicing it until the situation is extremely dire. The more you hesitate on maintaining your car properly, the more you put your car and your own safety at risk. By delaying much-needed maintenance, you are also affecting your car’s longevity as wear and tear occur more rapidly. Moreover, you should also carry the necessary equipment on the off chance that you face an emergency. The equipment is only good if you know how to use them, so knowing how to use them is also an equally necessary quality. A good driver is a knowledgeable driver, so taking proper care of your car will make sure the car doesn’t fail you.
Remember that since you are driving on a publicly shared road, it is just as much your responsibility as the next person to make sure that you don’t make any compromises regarding other people’s safety on the road. This applies to anyone that drives on the road, and being a good driver isn’t just about knowing all about a car, knowing how to drive, or being safe on the road; it also means being considerate and a well-mannered motorist on the road.