Traffic accidents happen each day and they can happen to anyone. More importantly, these accidents can happen to you especially when you are always on the road. There are plenty of ways that you can do and observe to help yourself avoid these accidents from happening.
According to the World Health Organization, there are approximately 1.3 million traffic accidents that result in fatalities each year. Come to think of it, that is a lot. If drivers do not take precaution on the road and follow these tips, these numbers might not decrease. Worse, these numbers might even increase each year.
Accidents do not come cheap. This may cost you a fortune, especially when your car is not insured or the person who hit your car is not insured. You may end up paying for your own repairs or for the repairs of the car that you hit. But if you are uninsured, there are examples of uninsured motorist claims like the uninsured motorist claim in Palm Coast, FL.
Pay Attention to The Road and Other Drivers
Learning to drive is a learned skill and every other skill associated with it is also learned. You can have someone privately teach you to drive. You can also go to a driving school and have a teacher teach you. It solely depends on you on how you would like to learn how to drive.
You see, one of the most important things that they will teach you once you start learning how to drive is to pay close attention to the things around you. In fact, they would always keep on reminding you to focus. It may sound repetitive at times when they remind you, but it is because focus is an important factor.
They remind you to focus because when you pay attention to your surroundings, you are alert and are aware of what is going on. You take note of what you see around you and your peripheral vision. You take note of all the things you hear whether it may be a car, a person or a bicycle.
Paying attention to the road and other drivers is actually one of the things people neglect the most when driving. People forget to pay attention and do something else like texting while driving or choose a song on their music player. They take their eyes off the road for a second and then they end up crashing into an oncoming car or they end up driving into the curb.
That is why, most accidents are caused by people who do not pay attention to the road. Always remember that you are not the only person driving on the road and that there will always be people walking on the streets. Paying close attention goes a long way.
People tend to say that they either drive defensively or drive aggressively. One of these terms will surely keep you away from accidents and of them will surely bring you close to having accidents. To further understand what these terms mean, let us define them first.
Defensive driving refers to a driving style where you tend to follow safe procedures when driving. This type of driving style focuses on the safety of the driver and the safety of its surroundings. It is the practice of being a precautionary driver all the time. It is the ideal and accepted style of driving worldwide. This is the driving style that they teach you when you learn how to drive. Following traffic lights, keeping a safe distance from cars in front, maintaining a safe speed are examples of defensive driving styles and skills observed by many.
Aggressive driving is the total opposite of defensive driving. By definition, it is a form of driving style where the driver commits driving offenses that may endanger others or property. Examples of these are speeding, tailgating a car in front, sudden braking when a car is behind you, driving recklessly, running the red light, and many more.
Driving aggressively will surely make you prone to accidents. It is not only dangerous but is also troublesome for others. Unlike driving defensively, you not only keep yourself away from accidents, you also take into consideration your surroundings.
Don’t Drive Faster Than What You’re Comfortable At
Driving fast does not necessarily make you an aggressive driver. You are permitted to drive fast, as long as it is under the speed limit. But, that does not also mean all people are used to driving fast.
You may start to drive fast when you are late for work or you might be late for a class. You might be in an emergency that is why you need to drive faster. Perhaps you may want to try out the capacity of your new car.
All of these are acceptable reasons, again, as long as they are under the permitted speed limit. But, you must also take into consideration your own driving skill.
You might be a new driver and you still might not be familiar with your car. Perhaps you were used to driving a little slower. Then all the more you should maintain a speed where you are comfortable at.
Most speeding accidents happen when the driver speeds up their car to a speed that they are not skilled enough to control. Don’t let this happen to you, too.
Overtake Only When You Are 100% Sure
Overtaking is completely okay when the car in front of you is a little bit slow and you are in a hurry. An example of an overtaking scenario is when a tractor on a two-lane road is in front of you. Will you wait patiently behind the tractor when you know that you can overtake?
Obviously, you will need to speed up and overtake to evade the slow moving tractor. But, in order to do so, you must check the lanes of the road. Are cars permitted to cross to the outer lane to overtake or is overtaking not allowed?
You must always check the lane if the lane is clear of oncoming traffic and when overtaking is permitted. Do not attempt to overtake when an oncoming car is near especially when your car is not designed to speed up all the time.
Keep A Safe Distance
Do not drive too close to the cars right in front of you. If the car in front you suddenly steps on the brake, you won’t have enough room to slow down and you might end up crashing on to them. Do not try to anticipate what the driver in front of you might do because not all drivers have the same driving skill and style.
Also, when you keep a safe distance, you give yourself more time to react whenever something happens right in front of you. You get the time to think and decide if you should stop or evade. Getting too close to a car robs you of this opportunity.
If you are unsure if you are too close or too far from the vehicle in front of you, you may try the three-second rule. If the vehicle in front of you passed an object, perhaps a lamp post, start counting to three. If you pass by that same object once you count to three, it means you are at a safe distance.
Use Your Turn Signals
There’s this old saying about BMW drivers. Their cars do not have turn signals because they are pointless to use. Obviously, that is a joke, and turn signals have their beneficial use.
Turn signals tell your intention to the driver in the car in front of you or behind you. Using them allows them to prepare if you plan to make a right or left turn, or if you plan to overtake a vehicle that is in front of you. It is very useful to prevent cars from crashing on to you because they know the direction you intend to go.
Don’t Drink and Drive
Drinking while driving under the influence of alcohol is also one of the biggest causes of vehicular accidents and fatalities. Its effect has taken countless lives and not many who survive fully recover.
Whenever you drink alcohol, it prevents your brain’s communication pathways from fully functioning. Meaning, you would not be able to think and decide quickly enough, your movement and body coordination is impaired and your vision becomes distorted. Performing tasks that use your motor skills and cognitive skills will become much harder when you drink.
Due to this, your reaction time when driving is affected. Your brain processes information much more slowly than usual. This in return makes your legs that control the pedals and your hands that control the steering wheel react slower.
Speeding is a common offense associated with drinking alcohol. The reason behind this is that your brain is having a hard time judging speed and due to poor motor skills, the driver’s legs step on the gas pedal further. There are even instances where the driver under the influence drives very slowly.
All in all, nobody in the right mind would want to get in an accident. If you would want to keep yourself away from accidents, our tips will help you in every way it can. Of course, skill and experience are also important matters that will surely help you get a long way.