Understanding how to drive in a safe, consistent fashion is crucial to keeping yourself and others on the road safe. To be a safer driver, you need to put in the work and develop habits that will ensure you drive wonderfully without even needing to give it a second thought. Many of us assume we’re already one of the best drivers in our town, but even the best drivers among us have room for improvement. To help you make those life-saving improvements, here are nine driving habits that help prevent accidents, and which can help you save tons of money on your insurance premiums:
Whether you’re trying to switch your radio to the right station, browsing your phone, or arguing with a passenger, distractions while driving can be deadly. Knowing how to avoid these distractions, and setting up any entertainment you’ll be listening to before putting your vehicle in drive, is recommended. Doing so will keep you significantly safer, and prevent you from unwittingly causing an accident that might hurt someone else.
Speed limit signs are not the only signage you should be paying attention to while driving. Sudden yield signs, signs warning about crossing hazards, school-warning signs, and much more litter the roadway, after all. By staying as aware of the signs you pass as possible, you’ll stay that much more keyed into the road and world around you. We all make mistakes now and again, however, so if you find yourself in need of legal assistance, contacting the best Chicago auto accident attorney will help you get the representation you deserve.
Many drivers fail to provide enough space between themselves and the vehicles in front of them. This not only leads to many fender-benders on low-speed roads but can cause deadly accidents on highways. Simply adding another five feet or more to your following distance can help you improve your driving significantly, and will allow you to realize just how close you might have been driving to vehicles in front of you before the adjustment.
Driving while intoxicated is always a no-go, but there are other forms of impairment that might not immediately come to mind when you’re hitting the road. Always wearing visual or audio aids you’ve been prescribed, having sunglasses handy on bright days, or avoiding getting behind the wheel if you’re particularly sick are all important as well. Knowing where your limits are is essential in keeping you safe and steady on the road.
Knowing the state of the weather before you hit the road is crucial to being an excellent, safe driver. Trying to adjust your route or driving method as the weather hits suddenly can leave you unaware, anxious, and less careful. By having a plan ahead of time, and materials in your vehicle to help you deal with any weather-related incidents, you’ll be one of the safest, most efficient drivers on the road. You’ll even be prepared to help others if need be, so following this step is an absolute must.
Even if you drive perfectly, a sudden malfunction within your vehicle can cause you to enter a dangerous situation unwittingly. By performing maintenance and checkups on your vehicle frequently, you lower the chances of having to deal with out-of-the-blue malfunctions (or underperformance issues). Not only will this keep you extra safe on the road, but it will help you catch repair and maintenance issues before they become a major budgetary problem.
Driving defensively is the best way to ensure you keep yourself and others safe to the best of your ability. Driving on offense is an easy way to not only put yourself in danger but make other cars on the road feel unsafe, and uncertain of what your next move might be. To keep everyone on the road at ease, driving defensively is an absolute must.
8. Always Use Your Turn Signals
All safe drivers know how important turn signals are to keeping both yourself and others on the road aware of your intentions. Using them, even when it seems useless, will keep you in the habit of making sure they’re used when it matters. Perfecting this habit will allow you to avoid fender-benders, keep other drivers aware of your intentions, and ensure you do your part to keep your roads as accident-free as possible.
That’s right, even if you’re just in a parking lot, keeping your signals visible and properly used is important (so make sure you check that your signals are functioning properly every week).
Even if you’re driving as safely as possible, other vehicles on the road are not under your control. The most potentially dangerous vehicle you’ll frequently encounter by far is tractor-trailers. These vehicles are not only incredibly heavy, large, and unwieldy when they begin to lose control, but they can cause large pile-ups and obstructions that can be difficult to walk away from.
To avoid these dreadful situations, simply give extra space to tractor-trailers when you’re around them, and always stay extra aware of their driving intentions (using the defensive driving tactics that we discussed earlier to assist you).
With these nine habits under your belt, you’ll be on your way to experiencing the safest year you’ve ever had on the road. Not only will you keep yourself and your community out of danger, but you’ll save tons on insurance and maintenance costs at the same time. With these benefits laid out, you have no reason not to begin training yourself to master these nine life-changing, life-saving driving habits ASAP.