Tag: Safe Driving

Safe Driving Tips for New Drivers

Safe Driving Tips for New Drivers

When you first begin driving, there are many traffic laws to be learned and driving skills to be practiced. Because of this, auto accidents are ranked as the leading cause of teenage fatalities. In view of these statistics, it is very important that new drivers learn some techniques to improve their driving skills. Fortunately, there are many things new drivers can do to reduce their risks and increase their safety on the road.

 

Here are some simple safety tips to help you improve your driving skills to stay safe on the road:

1 – Use Common Sense

Unfortunately, many accidents involving teenage drivers are caused by a simple lack of judgment. In many instances, your common sense is all you need to stay safe while driving.

Although they may seem obvious to you, here are some frequently neglected common sense driving suggestions:

  • Check to make sure your vehicle is in good working order before driving.
  • Keep up with regular oil changes and other necessary vehicle maintenance.
  •  Pay attention to other drivers on the road, and be courteous.
  •  Look both ways before proceeding through an intersection or backing out of a parking stall.

By following these simple driving tips, you can greatly reduce your chances of getting in an accident while driving.

2 – Buckle Your Seat belt

Buckling up your seat belt may seem like another common sense issue, but it is unfortunately something that is very often neglected. Too many drivers forget to use – or simply choose not to use – this simple yet lifesaving safety feature. Seat belts were designed to keep drivers and passengers protected, but they won’t do anything for you if you don’t use them properly.

Always wear your seat belt, even if you are only driving a short distance. This is not only a safety concern, but it is also the law in almost every state. Also, whenever you are in a vehicle with others, make sure that each passenger is wearing a seat belt. This simple step could help to save many lives.

3 – Never Drink or Take Drugs And Drive

Alcohol is one of the major causes of driving accidents. Drug use falls closely behind. To stay on the safe side, never drink any amount of alcohol or take drugs before you attempt to drive. This is not only for your own personal safety, but it is also to ensure the safety of the others on the road and in your vehicle.

The facts show that when a person drinks even a small amount of alcohol, or takes certain prescription or illegal drugs, their judgment can be severely impaired. When you consider that driving requires your full attention, it makes sense that this minor shift in judgment could put you in such grave danger.

To put it bluntly, do not attempt to drink or take drugs that affect your judgment before driving. You have been warned enough that you don’t need to try it in order to believe that it’s a bad idea.

4 – Learn and Obey The Rules Of The Road

When you get behind the wheel of a thousand pound vehicle, you are putting yourself and others at risk. One of the best things you can do to stay safe on the road is to follow the rules. However, in order for you to follow the rules, you need to be willing to learn what they are. Take the steps necessary for you to learn the local traffic laws so that you can be a safe and responsible driver. This will not only save you a lot of money in traffic citations, but it will also help to reduce your risks while driving.

5 – Minimize Distractions and Focus On Driving

One of the major problems facing new drivers is overconfidence. Don’t fall into this trap. Although you might be able to text and do your homework at the same time, you shouldn’t be attempting to multitask while you are driving. Looking away from the road for a single second could cause you to get into a major car wreck.

To help prevent dangerous accidents, try to keep distractions at a minimum and focus your entire attention on the task of driving.

7 – Never Text and Drive

Texting and other data use while driving is very dangerous.  This activity is roughly 6 times more likely to cause an accident than driving while intoxicated.  According to the US Department of Transportation, sending or receiving a text takes the driver’s eyes away from the road for an average of 4.6 seconds which, at 55 mph, is equivalent to driving the length of a football field blind.   To help prevent dangerous accidents, try to keep distractions at a minimum and focus your entire attention on the task of driving.

Whether you are a brand new driver or very experienced, by following these simple safety tips you can help to prevent a variety of driving accidents and stay safe on the road.

Practice Safe Driving By Keeping Your Speed Under Control

Practice Safe Driving By Keeping Your Speed Under Control

Speeding In Order To Compensate For Hectic Schedules

There can be no question that people nowadays seem to be regularly pressed for time.  Whether they’re on their way to work, a family gathering, home, school, or any other destination, people appear to be going faster and faster.  There have been many arguments against speeding, but what’s the harm if you’re comfortable with your driving skills?

The fact of the matter is simple.  Most people are actually over-confident with their abilities to control a vehicle that weighs thousands of pounds traveling at high speeds.

Risks Of Driving Faster

Speed limits are usually determined by taking a number of factors into account.  The most obvious of these would probably be the amount of vigilance that is necessary to navigate an area safely.  In a canyon, for example, there are likely to be many tight twists and turns that call for a lower speed limit to ensure that drivers will be able to maneuver their vehicles through the canyon.  While on a stretch of straight highway, you are more likely to see a higher speed limit due to a lack of potential risks and rough spots.

It is often considered to be common knowledge that the faster you are going, the longer it will take for you to come to a complete stop.  Unfortunately, however, this just is not the case.  People who drive at a rate of travel that is higher than specified, often, unknowingly, pose a very real risk to others for a number of reasons.

Some of those include:

  • An increase in the amount of time that is required to come to a full and complete stop
  • Less time to react to surprise obstacles and dangers
  • A potential to cause severe injury should an accident occur
  • A decrease in ultimate control of their vehicle while trying to avoid an accident

Any of the risks mentioned above could be a recipe for disaster under the wrong circumstances.  It is harder to compensate for small mistakes, and easier for you to lose control potentially harming yourself or others.  While many drivers may feel comfortable driving at higher speeds, most will fail to account for the increased risks that they bring to the table.

Simple Solutions To Help You Avoid Speeding

With all of the risks that are associated with driving faster, why do so many drivers still speed?  Maybe you’re running late for an important meeting, or are distracted with thinking about the stressful day ahead of you.  Whatever the case may be, speeding is dangerous, but is also 100% preventable.

There are simple things you can do to help you avoid speeding.  Setting your clocks ahead, or making sure that you leave earlier than you need to can compensate for red lights and construction areas that may take a bite out of your time.  Not driving, if it can be avoided, or taking a break while driving when you are overly stressed are both good ways to help you remember to watch your speed.

Regardless of what your speeding triggers are, there are ways that you can avoid pushing the pedal to the metal and increasing your risk of being involved in an accident.  Educating yourself with information that is available online is a great way to find the commitment to stop speeding, and to form other safe driving habits that can make you a better driver.

Stay Safe With These Winter Driving Tips

Stay Safe With These Winter Driving Tips

The best piece of advice for driving in snowy, icy conditions is simply don’t do it if you don’t have to. Unfortunately, most of us have obligations that we must attend—even in the winter months. Work, school, family functions and Christmas parties to name just a few. Here are a few road safety tips to help you stay safe this winter.

Check The Weather Forecast

If the forecast calls for a storm, allow yourself plenty of extra time. The more time you have to spare, the less likely you will be to drive recklessly and lose control of your vehicle. If you going on a long-distance road trip, be sure to check the forecast in each city that you will be driving through as the weather and road conditions can change drastically from one region to the next.

Be Prepared

Never leave home without your cell phone, especially in bad weather conditions.  You want to be able to call for help if necessary. The folks at AAA also recommend placing a placing a safety or survival kit inside your vehicle at the beginning of winter. Your kit should be divided into items that you will use on a daily basis as well as emergency items. Daily items should be easily accessible and may include:

  • Ice scraper
  • Snow brush
  • Driving gloves
  • Umbrella

Survival items can be stored in the trunk or rear cargo area of you vehicle, but are best stored somewhere where you can access them without getting out of your vehicle if possible. Such items include:

  • Blankets
  • Hats
  • Food
  • Water
  • Medication

Emergency items that you will want to keep in your automobile during the winter months include:

  • Jumper cables
  • Chains, gravel or kitty litter
  • Flashlight or headlamp
  • Road flares

Hopefully, you won’t ever need to use any of these items. But in the event that you become stranded they could save your life.

Drive Carefully

When the roads are covered with snow and ice, you should always drive carefully. Slow down if you need too. Driving too fast can cause you to lose control of your car and collide with either stationary or moving objects.  In many states, driving too fast for the conditions can also result in a ticket for reckless driving.

The best way to maintain control of your vehicle in the snow and ice is to accelerate and decelerate slowly. This will provide the best traction and help you to avoid skidding out of control. If you do find yourself losing control of the vehicle, try this trick that professional drivers have been using for years: turn your steering wheel the opposite direction that you are trying to turn. It may sound crazy, but it works!

Finally, when conditions are too slippery, you should also leave yourself about three times as much room between cars as you normally do to that you have plenty of time to stop. Failure to maintain control of your vehicle can also result in reckless driving charges, not to mention endangers you and others on the road.

Don’t Drive Fatigued

It doesn’t matter if you are driving a short distance or a long distance, you should never drive fatigued. This can be as dangerous as driving under the influence. So rather than staying at a holiday party longer than you want, use this as an excuse to duck out early. If you start to feel drowsy while driving, pull over immediately. Ask a passenger in your car to drive for a while or pull that blanket out of your emergency kit and take a power nap!

Don’t Drive Under The Influence

This should go without saying, but unfortunately many people still do it. During the holiday party season, it is more important than ever to designate a driver. This is the safest, easiest way to stay prevent an accident or a citation. If you aren’t traveling with a friend or loved one and you plan to have a few drinks, you would be well advised to take some sort of public transportation: train, taxi or bus. Planning to take public transportation ahead of time will not only ensure your own safety, but also the safety of others. You won’t have to worry about returning the next day to retrieve the car you left behind. If neither a designated driver nor public transportation is an option, stay where you are. Chances are the host of the party would rather have you crash on the couch for a while than putting yourself at risk.