It may be several years since you first started driving, and your record might be clean. Maybe you’ve never so much as scratched another vehicle. The police have never pulled you over, and you have never received points or fines for speeding.
You are lucky. Often accidents and scrapes are not necessarily our fault, but they happen every day. But, looking at your own driving style, can you honestly put your hand on your heart and say that you put as much care and attention into driving with the utmost safety in mind?
USING YOUR PHONES WHILE DRIVING
It may well be illegal where you live, but how many people do you see driving down the road with their heads down engrossed in their phone screens? It happens all too often. And admit it to yourself, have you ever glanced at your phone if you’ve had a notification while driving? 25% of all automotive accidents occur as a result of somebody using their mobile phone at the wheel. That is a staggering amount, and if it’s something that you do, it is a bad habit that you need to eradicate from your driving immediately.
Buy yourself a Bluetooth headset, or connect your phone to your cars entertainment system so that you can still receive calls. Use a fixed cradle to hold your phone on your dashboard, or windscreen and do not touch it while driving.
If your phone has a personal assistant built into its operating system, learn how to use it. Using voice commands can mean that, if you need to get information from your phone while driving, you can maintain concentration on the road. If you need to renavigate if you are using your phone’s maps function, voice commands can do this too.
Keeping focused on what is going on in front of you is as important as what is happening behind and to your side. Bicycle accident attorneys deal with many incidents where drivers have failed to check their mirrors before moving off. The mirror checks that you learn on your first ever lesson with an instructor are there for your safety and that of other road users. Keep constant vigilance for hazards that may arise at all times throughout your journey. From the moment that you turn your ignition on to the moment you turn it off; you are responsible for maintaining a level of care.
Not using indicators is a widespread issue. Indicating where you intend to move on the road prevents accidents. If you haven’t alerted those around you of where you plan on moving to, then they may well not know what you are about to do, and an accident could occur. Try to give as much advance notice as possible, but consider where a signal may be misleading to other drivers and wait for a time when your intentions will be more precise.
However long we have been driving, we should all take the time regularly to review our driving to ensure that we are the best we can be. Refresher courses are available from many significant instructors, and these may be of benefit to many of us.
Photo Credit: Rudy and Peter Skitterians