Most people prefer to think of themselves as safe drivers. While someone may be able to point to an accident-free driving history, realistically, that has little to do with how safe that motorist truly is. There are often unsafe habits that arise when we’re stressed or hurried, or maybe we simply don’t realize the potential ramifications of our choices.
Here are a few good driving habits that encourage safety and help us become more conscientious drivers from Mark Conner of drivesafely.info
According to Radar Sign, speed is widely recognized as contributing to road risk in two key ways. First, it can put you at higher risk for having an accident in the first place. Additionally, if you are in an accident, it increases the risk of injury to you and others involved in the accident.
There are many “reasons” people speed. Impatience, a rush of adrenaline, or carelessness can have us driving faster than we should on the road or highway. While it might seem harmless, speeding can result in being ticketed, having to spend time in court, and causing an accident that results in damages, injuries, or even death.
With enough incidents on the road, you could also end up being labeled a high-risk driver. AutoInsurance.com explains that high-risk drivers are those who have multiple instances of tickets, violations, accidents, and DUI convictions. If you are labeled high risk, you will likely still be able to find an insurer to cover you, but the premiums will likely be higher.
Put Down Your Phone
Speed is only one factor in how much risk you are on the road. According to the NHTSA, 3,477 people were killed by distracted driving in 2015, and the organization cited texting while driving as “the most alarming distraction.” Reading or sending a text takes up about five seconds of your focus and concentration. At 55 mph, you’ve just driven the entire length of a football field with your eyes completely off the road. It’s easy to see how dangerous phone use can be while driving.
Don’t Drive Under the Influence
Safer America notes some statistics indicate driving while intoxicated is one of the leading contributing factors to fatal crashes. Alcohol can reduce driving ability in many ways, making it harder to judge distance, impairing vision, and making motor skills clumsy and slow.
Drugs can similarly impair your ability to drive safely. Marijuana slows reaction time, adversely affects distance and time judgments, and impairs coordination. Cocaine users typically are aggressive on the road, while those who use benzodiazepines, a type of sedative, can feel drowsy or dizzy.
The US is currently suffering from an epidemic of prescription drug misuse, such as sedative overuse, that surpassed drunk driving as the number one cause of motor vehicle fatalities. Even prescription medications can be hard on your body and lead to dangerous driving.
To ensure the safety of yourself and others, abstain from alcohol as well as using illicit or prescribed drugs that interfere with coordination, focus, and concentration – qualities indispensable for driving safely on the road.
According to some experts, drowsy driving could be behind as much as 21 percent of fatal crashes. Driving when your body is fighting for shuteye can endanger your life and those of others on the road. Losing control for even a few seconds can lead to highway fatalities and a lifetime of painful regret.
Before getting behind the wheel, assess how tired you are, and use public transportation or call a friend or taxi rather than risking driving.
When it comes to driving, it’s crucial to remember how quickly things can go awry. For the sake of safety, take your time, set aside your phone, and drive with a clear and alert body and mind. These simple habits can save your life.