Modern drivers are faced with an abundance of distractions while driving. Many people are facing the reality of driving accidents that stem from unsafe driving habits. Whether you are driving alone or with passengers, safe driving should always be a priority. Here are the top six driving safety tips to help you develop safe driving habits.
- Never Drink and Drive
This is number one on the list because it is the most important, accounting for a vast amount of driving fatalities. Intoxicated drivers continue to be one of the biggest safety issues for drivers, passengers and other motorists. Even with a low blood-alcohol level, driving while intoxicated inhibits a driver’s reaction time and coordination can be severely deteriorated. Furthermore, driving under the influence causes drivers to make rash or foolish driving decisions, potentially leading to serious consequences. Not only is drinking and driving a bad idea, it is a crime. To ensure you and everyone you love is safe, never drink and drive or ride with someone who does.
- Stop Speeding
The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) states, “Speeding is one of the most prevalent factors contributing to traffic crashes.” The next time you are running late and contemplating speeding, remember the average time you will save driving 10mph over the speed limit will amount to less than 5 minutes. Five minutes is not worth your life, or the life of someone you love. To assure the safety of yourself and others, always obey the speed limits.
- Reduce Driving Distractions
Distractions are a constant in our day-to-day life. Interruptions can become even more prevalent while you are driving. Using your cell phone, texting, navigation systems and hands-free devices all attribute to distracted driving. Other elements include managing children, eating, applying make-up, changing channels on the radio and interacting with passengers. If your attention is diverted it becomes difficult to stay alert, safe and aware of your surroundings. Remember to always keep your eyes on the road and both hands on the steering wheel.
- Always Wear Your Seat Belt
This sounds like a re-run safety tip, but there is a reason it makes the top five on safe driving tip lists. This is because seat belts save lives. Wearing your seat belt dramatically reduces your risk of being injured in a car accident. Additionally, many states have strict seat belt enforcement laws requiring all motorists to buckle-up. Make this tip a good habit and always wear your seat belt.
- Assume the Worst About Other Drivers
This tip sounds like it doesn’t belong, but it does. Assuming that every driver on the road is paying attention, practicing safe driving habits and not distracted by an incoming call can have tragic results. The best way to stay safe while driving is to constantly be aware of your surroundings. Defensive driving is key to staying safe while driving. Bonus tip: keeping a safe distance from other motorists while driving ensures you are practicing defensive driving.
- Never Drive While Drowsy
Many of us spend our days yawning from an early start, hoping coffee will do the trick. If you are tired while driving it can put you at risk for an accident. Sleepiness is a contributing factor in many accidents, causing the driver to doze off or zone out for what seems only seconds. A good way to tell if you’re too tired to drive is: If you are too tired to do simple math, driving should not be on the agenda.