10 Tips for Safer Driving
Aggressive driving is a great way to get involved in car accidents, and vehicle accidents lead to personal injury or wrongful death lawsuits. It could also lead to premise liability lawsuits. Driving safely not only means that your driving must be on par, but you must watch for other drivers.
- Stay the proper distance behind the car ahead of you. You should stay at least one car length behind the driver in front of you for every 10 miles per hour of speed.
- Do not slam on the brakes as you approach a stop light or sign. Slow down gradually, especially if you know the light is going to change. This also helps with fuel economy.
- Take care going through intersections even if your light is green. Someone coming from the other direction could run the red light or stop sign—be prepared to conduct evasive maneuvers through braking or swerving. This means that you should know how far the vehicle behind you is and if there is anything on the left or right side of you.
- Always use your signal when making a turn. Even if you don’t think there is someone behind you, another driver could come up behind you quickly. Your turn signal will give them fair warning that you are slowing down to make a turn.
- Be sure you are in the proper turn lanes when slowing to make a turn. Some roadways have center turn lanes. As you enter the turn lane, be sure another driver is not in the turn lane, coming from the opposite direction. Sometimes drivers speed into the center turn lanes without regard for other drivers.
- Pay attention to tractor-trailer trucks, especially if a truck’s turn signal is on for a right turn. Trucks turn wide and may take two lanes to make a right turn. If you see a truck signaling to turn right, do not pass it on the right, as the driver may not see you.
- Watch for pedestrians, cyclists and motorcycle drivers. While these people must also obey the rules of the road, they are smaller and harder to see.
- When driving in a residential area, watch for children. Children often run into the road to chase a ball or are riding bicycles in the road. Children are unpredictable, so even a child on a sidewalk could suddenly run into the road.
- Never speed through parking lots or cut through businesses to miss a red light. When driving down a line of parked cars, watch for people backing out — some don’t even look while others may have a difficult time seeing as they inch out of the parking space.
- Always obey the speed limits. If the weather is bad, drive only as fast as is safe, which may not be the speed limit. If it is raining so hard that the wipers can’t keep up with the water, pull over until the rain subsides enough so that the wipers can keep up with it.