Whether you are a professional driver, like an F1 pilot or a truck driver, or you simply drive your personal car for errands and as a means of transportation to and from work, safe driving is a must for everyone in the traffic. Not everyone practices safe driving. As a consequence, many minor or fatal accidents are caused by reckless driving and not paying proper attention to traffic. For this reason, even the smallest detail can make the difference when it comes to safe driving.
It doesn’t matter if you are highly experienced or a beginner. Practising all the actions and taking all the safety precautions is of the utmost importance. Otherwise, you risk putting yourself and others in danger when some things can be avoided if you commit to wearing your seatbelt every time or taking your vehicle for maintenance checks. And these are only some of the ways in which you can ensure road safety on your part.
For every driver from all experience levels, it is crucial to know all the necessary things that support safe driving and to practice them rigorously. So, here are six tips that drivers must know and do while they are on the road:
Texting is a major distraction
Not only is texting one of the most massive distractions while driving, but it is also one of the primary causes of vehicle collisions. In the UK, around 25% of drivers state that they use their smartphones to make or receive a call while they are behind the wheel. Apart from this, there is an even more worrying percentage of 51% drivers aged between 17 and 24. Although it might seem like a harmless action, it only takes a split of a second of not paying attention to be involved in an unfortunate event.
Using your smartphone while driving includes making phone calls, texting or even searching the internet. Under no circumstance should a driver engage in such actions while they are driving. When stopped, drivers can safely check their phones. Plus, there are many hands-free gadgets, such as an earpiece or connecting the phone to the car via Bluetooth, that can support communication when driving.
The speed limit is there for a reason
Speeding is yet another reason for accidents that could have been easily avoided. When a car is going extremely fast, it is much more difficult and challenging for a driver to maintain control of it in case of a sudden hazard appearing on the road. Even the most experienced driver would have difficulty avoiding this when driving over the speed limit. A noteworthy mention would be that going excessively over this limit is reckless behaviour. Not only is it dangerous, but it is against the law.
Drinking doesn’t mix with driving
It might sound straightforward saying that no driver should go behind the wheel if they drink before. However, the reality is that some individuals ignore the importance of this. Even if you have only had one drink, as long as it exceeds the legal limit of alcohol in the blood and the person feels even slightly intoxicated, it is illegal and not to mention unsafe behaviour.
For this reason, it is crucial you take into consideration the safety of yourself, other drivers and pedestrians. If it happens to go to an unplanned dinner or party and drink, then the best alternative, in this case, is to leave the car parked overnight and take a taxi instead. This way, although it might be a hassle to go back and pick your car, at least you diminish the risks of a collision.
Eliminate other distractions
Apart from using your smartphone while driving, other distractions include playing music incredibly loud in the car. This can be distracting if you are too focused on singing and enjoying your favourite song or artist. While no one says that music shouldn’t be allowed when driving, it is crucial not to let it interfere with your concentration, making you less alert in traffic. For instance, an ambulance might be coming your way, and if you cannot hear it and let it pass, this situation might cause incidents.
What might also affect you while driving is arranging your rear-view mirrors or adjusting your chair’s height. Drivers should make such modifications before starting the car and leaving. If you are trying to set them while also paying attention to the road, an accident might easily happen.
Invest in safety technology
The truth is, accidents can happen regardless of how much you plan and take all the necessary precautions. That is simply the reality of things. However, what you can do, apart from following all the tips as mentioned earlier and be committed to safe driving, is installing safety technology for vehicles. This is an effective method of ensuring road safety every time you get behind the wheel.
Among the various emerging technologies drivers can invest in and install them on their cars, you can find:
- Video recording cameras;
- Sensor and brake systems;
- Safety turn alarms.
This way, no matter what type of car you own, or the reason for using it – personal or commercial – you can make use of effective technologies that can support drivers.
Regular maintenance is highly advised
If a driver doesn’t take their car to regular maintenance checks, this can easily shorten your vehicle’s lifespan significantly. For instance, things like not changing the oil fluid, or other essential car fluids, frequently or not replacing the tyres each season can damage your car in a shorter period of time. As a consequence of this, the vehicle can become a danger in traffic.
When a vehicle is not maintained correctly and starts developing mechanical problems, it can severely damage the engine. Such an issue will cause the car to stop functioning suddenly, which might be risky if you are caught in traffic – not to mention disrupting both for you and other drivers. Therefore, it is vital that drivers provide maintenance checks frequently and avoid ending up in such a situation.