Did you know that over 90 percent of car accidents occur as a result of driver mistakes? If you’re a driver, and you plan to hit the roads today, you don’t want to find yourself in a situation where you’re at fault for a collision, and you have to live with the fact that you’ve put somebody else’s life in danger. If you’re keen to steer clear of trouble, here are some simple ways you can minimize your risk of dangerous driving.
Keep road rage in check
Yes, it can be frustrating when the driver in front of you pulls out when there probably wasn’t enough time to do so or when you’re stuck behind a tractor or a slow-moving truck, but don’t let road rage get the better of you. Keep calm when you’re driving, be respectful of others, and be patient. If there’s a huge line of traffic, don’t get riled up and start beeping your horn and huffing and puffing. There’s very little you can do if it’s rush hour or there has been an accident, so keep anger in check.
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Don’t drive too fast
It’s fun to drive fast, but the thrill of watching the speedometer shoot up is likely to be short-lived if you hit another driver or you see flashing blue lights in your rearview mirror. Speed restrictions are not there as a guideline. If there’s a sign, you need to ensure that you obey it. If you’re speeding, and you’re involved in an accident, there’s every chance that you’ll face charges.
Avoid drinking and driving
If you’ve been for a drink with friends or you’ve opened a bottle of wine with dinner, you may assume that you’re fine to drive. The reality is that even minimal amounts of alcohol can have a negative impact on your ability to drive safely. Alcohol affects your reaction times, it impairs judgment, and it can cause you to take unnecessary risks. If you’ve been injured by a drunk driver, seek advice from firms like Winer, McKenna & Burritt, LLP. If you were the guilty party, don’t be surprised if the other driver takes legal action and you hear from the police. If you want to drink, don’t risk getting behind the wheel. There are many other ways you can get home, including taking a bus, the subway or a train, asking a friend for a lift or hailing a cab.
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Focus on the road ahead
Did you know that every day in the US, 9 people are killed as a result of distracted driving? If you’re driving, it’s critical that you keep your eyes on the road at all times. If you’re texting, you’re messing around with the radio, or you’re talking to somebody in the back of the car, you could lose sight of potential hazards, and you might not be able to react in time. If you’re staring at your phone, and a child runs out from behind a parked car, for example, you won’t see them until the last moment, and you may not be able to stop quickly enough. Maintain your focus, be aware of what’s going on around you, and if you really need to send a message or make a call, pull over in a safe place.
Even if you think you’re a brilliant driver, there’s always room for improvement.