The rise of technology revolutionized the auto industry. Cars are now safer than ever. However, there are still a staggering number of car accidents each year, the majority of which are due to driver error. The best way to avoid an accident is to employ safe driving behaviors. Below are several safe driving tips to reduce incidents.
Drive with Traffic
Follow the speed of the other cars on the road. If there are multiple lanes, pick the one that suits the speed you wish to travel. Always remember that each lane farther to the left moves (or should move) faster than the one to its right. Also remember that in the US, cars coming from the left always have the right of way. When there are few or no other cars on the road, do your best to stay near the speed limit – setting your cruise control will help greatly with this.
Remove or Avoid Distractions
Distracted driving, like speeding, is a significant contributor to car accidents. As drivers’ attention spans shrink, the urge to talk, text, or check social media while driving increases. However, interacting with an electronic device behind the wheel reduces reaction time and pulls the driver’s attention away from the road. Because of this, many states passed laws banning the use of handheld cell phones. Even so, other distractions can prove just as lethal such as applying makeup, eating food, or chatting with other passengers. If drivers cannot remove distractions (such as other passengers in the car), they should take pains to reduce them. The best way to do so is to always keep their eyes on the road and both hands on the wheel.
While following the speed of traffic and limiting distractions will improve driver safety, there are several other suggestions that can reduce the risk of accidents. Some examples include:
- Wear a seatbelt
- Do not follow other vehicles too closely
- Do not drive with intoxicating substances in your system (this includes marijuana)
- Do not drive drowsy
- Take extra precautions in foul weather (i.e. slow down, increase following distance, etc.)
- Perform regular car maintenance
Practicing safe driving techniques can help reduce the likelihood of an accident, but drivers can only account for their own behavior. Defensive driving can help, but sometimes accidents are unavoidable. The Reilly Company can help individuals assess their risk factors and determine if their car insurance coverage is adequate in the event of an accident. For more information on safe driving, contact us.