Driving a car is actually very safe even though there are accidents happening every day. Most people will go their whole lives without ever getting into an accident. However, there is some risk involved and accidents do happen. Otherwise, lawyers like attorney Adam McPherson wouldn’t need to exist.
You can hedge your bets by being an active driver that can help prevent an accident even if you wouldn’t be at fault. There are techniques called defensive driving that help you understand how to avoid an accident so you can stay even safer on the road. In this article, we will go over how to be a defensive driver so you don’t need the services of a personal injury lawyer.
1 – Put the phone away
Texting while driving is quickly becoming one of the biggest threats to road safety in the country right now. It seems like an innocent thing to do to read a quick text and send a quick response. Many people think they can multitask well enough to do it safely.
The reality is that when you read a text and respond, you are taking your eyes off the road for up to eight seconds. A lot can happen in that time especially if you are traveling at a high velocity. You can run off the road and hit a pedestrian since you didn’t notice the car drifting. Or, a car can stop in front of you and you don’t realize it until you smash into it.
When you are driving you should put your phone away where you won’t be tempted to look at any incoming texts. If you are expecting an important text then you should pull off the road to somewhere safe where you can read it and respond securely.
Even talking on your phone while driving is dangerous. Having a hands free set will be helpful if you simply can’t avoid it. However, the same advice goes for talking on the phone.
2 – Don’t eat in the car
Things can happen quickly while you are behind the wheel and it is important to be able to react in time. This means that you have to have your hands on the wheel. When you are eating while driving your hands are not where they should be.
Imagine a child running out into the street while you have a burger in your hands. Would you be able to avoid that? Your hands need to be on the wheel so that you can swerve quickly and avoid the accident. That split second where you have to drop your food and grab the wheel is too much time to be able to react.
3 – Leave space
You should be able to fit a couple of cars between you and the car traveling in front of you. This gives you time to stop quickly in case the car ahead of you does. Pay attention to your speed as well as the speed of the cars in front of you and not only the one immediately in front. You should also pay attention to what is happening further ahead so there are no unexpected surprises.
Then, if you have to stop you have the time. When you are too close to the car ahead of you and not paying attention to what is happening ahead of it you may not be able to stop in time. A rear end collision like this is something that you will be at fault for in most states regardless of how it happened. This is because you are supposed to be in control of your car to avoid an accident like this. Traveling too close to the car ahead doesn’t leave you in control.
4 – Plan your route
Construction zones, traffic, and bad weather can all contribute to you not being totally in control of your vehicle. This is especially true if you are surprised by any of these factors. This is why it is important to know the route you plan to drive before you leave the house.
Check online to see if there is any traffic or construction along your route. Go a different way to avoid this as these areas are where an accident is likely to happen. The same thing applies to the weather. Check the weather report to see if there is any ice on the road, heavy rains expected, or snow. Certain routes will be worse than others when the weather is bad so you can take another.