Good Driving Practices that Keep You Safe

<img src="image.gif" alt="A yellow car" />Nothing gets on our nerves faster than bad driving. We all have our ideas on what good driving is, but do we know how to drive safely? According to AAA Foundation, aggressive driving accounts for more than half of all driving fatalities. Use the following tips to avoid becoming a statistic.

Slow down!

AAA says, “Although ‘road rage’ incidents provide some of the most shocking views of aggressive driving, many common behaviors, including racing, tailgating, failing to observe signs and regulations, and seeking confrontations with other drivers, all qualify as potentially aggressive behaviors. Speeding is one of the most prevalent aggressive behaviors.  AAA Foundation studies show that speeding is a factor in one-third of all fatal crashes.”

Most of us speed sometimes, but driving too fast gives us less time to react if something happens on the road. Slow down and drive the speed limit.

Be courteous.

Courtesy is a lost art on the road today, especially in larger cities. It doesn’t hurt for you to yield the right of way at a 4-way stop if you and another driver reach it at the same time. Let other drivers merge into traffic, even if you were there first. Courtesy costs you nothing, and it could prevent an accident.

Honor road signs and follow traffic laws.

A stop sign is not a suggestion. We see so many drivers ignore stop and yield signs. They are there to keep you safe and help traffic flow, so follow them. Stop completely at a red light before turning right. In short, drive like you did when you were 16 and learning. Chances are you were a better driver back then!

Pay attention.

Get off the cell phone, quit looking around, and drive. Not paying attention is the cause of many accidents, and it upsets other drivers, which can cause road rage. When you take your eyes off the road, you can cause an accident if traffic slows, an animal or child runs in front of you, or a traffic signal changes.

Don’t be the cause of the snowball effect.

One driver doing something aggressive or unwise can trigger responses in several drivers, which can mean an accident or a road rage incident.

Are you a rude or inconsiderate driver? Please stop doing things such as…

  • Waiting until the last minute to merge into traffic or change lanes.
  • Insisting upon the right of way, whether it’s yours or not.
  • Not accelerating to the appropriate speed before merging onto the highway.
  • Acting angry with other drivers and using rude gestures.
  • Not using your turn signal to indicate where you’re going.

When you engage in unsafe driving practices, you can trigger the same in other drivers. Remember, we’re all simply trying to get where we need to go. If you’re in a hurry, that’s your fault, so try leaving 10 minutes earlier next time. If you drive more courteously and safely, you’ll notice others do too.

Which safe driving practices do you follow (or not)? Tell us below.