Once you start up your car and pull out of your driveway, you have to become aware of your fellow drivers. After all, you’re part of a social and legal contract to drive as safely as you can. You’re not the only person on the road, and you should do your part to keep the roads safe for everyone. While accidents can’t be stopped completely, they can be avoided with safe driving.
Here are five tips that can help make you a safer driver.
1. Be aware of your surroundings
You should always pay attention to what’s going on around you. Check every intersection while driving through, check your mirrors, and make sure they’re adjusted properly. If you’re near a bus stop, pay attention to the buses as they can move in unpredictable ways. You should also keep your distance from other vehicles. It’s suggested that you keep a two-second gap between your vehicle and the car in front of you, and six if it’s wet or snowy. To gauge how much of a gap you need, spot a landmark or object on the side of the road. When the car in front of you passes it, count to two, and your vehicle should pass it at two. If it reaches the landmark sooner, slow down.
2. Wear your seatbelts
The bottom line is that seatbelts save lives. They prevent you from being thrashed around inside your car, or worse, thrown completely out of the car through the windshield. It’s been reported that nearly half of all fatal car accidents are because of the lack of a seatbelt. It doesn’t matter how safe you drive—it’s pointless if you aren’t taking the biggest safety measure of them all.
3. Don’t drive while tired
Exhaustion and driving do not mix. You could be the world’s best driver, but the moment you nod off, it doesn’t matter. Many accidents have occurred because the driver fell asleep. Instead of going on long road trips alone, take a friend or two so you don’t have to drive the entire time. If you can’t, and find a place to crash for the night. You should always be completely alert while on the road. One aspect of fatigue and tiredness that doesn’t get much attention is dehydration. If you’re stuck in traffic on a hot day, you can lose fluid rapidly. Keep some water bottles handy if you begin feeling dizzy.
4. Beware bad weather
Weather forecasts can change so quickly. One second you’ll have clear skies, then all of a sudden it’s getting dark and clouds have begun to roll in. If you find yourself driving through heavy rain, thick fog, or even a snowstorm, be extra attentive to the road. This is when the other tip of being aware of your surroundings really helps you from getting into a car accident.
Unfortunately, not all accidents can be prevented, so that’s why you should have car insurance. Not all car insurance policies are the same, so comparing different coverage options to get the best auto insurance quote and the right coverage is a great option. Simply share a few details about the type of car insurance you’re looking for with iSelect, and let the experts compile the best plans for you. From there you’ll be able to compare a range of different car insurance quotes and select the right insurance policy for your needs.
5. Vehicle maintenance
Taking care of your car doesn’t just extend the car’s life, it also helps to keep you safe. If your tires are bald, you’ll have a higher chance of hydroplaning in the rain. If your battery is dying, your car may die in the middle of an intersection or on the freeway. If your car’s headlights are foggy, it can lower visibility and you could hit something you didn’t see. You can easily clear up foggy headlights with a headlight restoration kit. Keep up on your car’s maintenance to stay safe on the roads.
We all have to share the roads, so do your part and drive safely.