Defensive driving is a skill learned over time. The result of defensive driving is that it saves lives, time, and money. We all have seen the freeway slowed to a crawl when an accident has occurred. Although it seems like it takes forever to get through the traffic, it takes even much more time to be on the side of the road after being involved in an accident. All too often we see the sports cars, young drivers, and impatient souls cutting through traffic trying to get to their final destination just a few minutes early – willing to risk their lives and the lives of others on the road with them. Below are some tips to try to avoid being a victim of these reckless drivers.
- Pull over for emergency vehicles.
- Do not drive if sleepy.
- Do not drive while intoxicated.
- Do not text and drive.
- Do not surf the Internet and drive.
- Do not hold your phone while driving.
- If speaking on the phone, secure the phone properly so that it will not fall onto the floor or under your seat.
- Drive the speed limit or as close to it as possible, because driving the speed limit will give you time to make key decisions should a reckless driver pose a threat to your vehicle while you are in motion.
- Be aware of what's going on all around you by checking your mirrors regularly; and assume that the people around you are all reckless drivers, because at any moment a seemingly controlled vehicle can veer over into your lane.
- Leave plenty of room between you and the vehicle in front of you, so that you are not likely to ram into the back of it should you be hit from behind.
- Constantly think about how you will maneuver your vehicle if a threat comes at you from any direction.
- Use your turning signals to get into another lane; and give others enough time to see the signals before merging into a new lane.
- Do not play music so loud that you cannot hear what is going on outside of the car – like the sirens from a police officer or an emergency vehicle, or someone honking their horn at you to get your attention to tell you about something that is wrong with your car.
- Be cautious when going through a 4-way intersection, with lights or stop signs, because other vehicles may drive right through them.
- Try not to overreact to a possible threat. For example, if someone is drifting into your lane, you can possibly slow down your vehicle gradually and move into other lanes further away from the threat; as opposed to some people who might aggressively honk their horn and curse at the other driver.
- Try to remain in one lane for as long as possible, because switching lanes increases your chance of being involved in an accident.
- Be patient when a light turns from red to green, it usually takes 1 second for every car that is in front of you before you can expect to move your vehicle forward. After the light turns green, if the car in front of you is not moving forward after you count up to the number of the cars that are in front of you, consider whether there may be something wrong with a vehicle in the lane you are in and determine whether to start thinking about getting out of that lane - because if the lane does not move and the light is green, someone behind you that is not paying attention may not slow down.
Thank you for reading the above tips. I hope that they help to keep you and your loved ones safe while driving.