Did you know that the leading causes of most car accidents are preventable? Accidents caused by burst tires and faulty brakes are not as common as drunk driving and going over the speed limit.
The decisions you make every time you get behind the wheel have a huge impact on your safety.
By changing a few of your normal driving habits, you can make every car trip much safer for both you and your family. Listed down below are the top seven tips for safe driving so that you never put yourself in preventable danger again. Keep reading to learn more!
1. Keep an Emergency Kit
One of the best tips for safe driving is to load up your vehicle with an emergency kit. This way, in the case of an accident, you aren’t left stranded without any supplies to help yourself out of a terrible situation. Every emergency kit should include items such as:
- Pain killers
- Charged phone
- Jumper cables
- Non-perishable snacks
- Emergency contact information
- Bottled water
Even the most prepared and careful drivers can make mistakes. Don’t forget to include a notebook and pen in your car so that you can write down important information after your crash and have everything you need to move forward.
2. Minimize All Distractions
The secret on how to drive safely is to put away your cellphone whenever you start driving. Regardless of your experience level, cellphones are a huge detriment to your reaction times. When you try to use your cellphone and drive at the same time, the speed in which you react to the situations around you slow down by decades.
Other distractions aren’t much better and have a similar effect on the way we drive.
While you can’t control unruly kids trying to get your attention in the backseat, it’s good to try and give your kids activities to do so that they stay occupied during the drive. Always make sure any on-board animals are secured and cannot get to the driver’s seat. Don’t play any music that’s so loud you can’t hear anything going on around you.
By doing your best to minimize these distractions, you’re giving yourself the best chance to stay safe.
3. Avoid Impaired Driving
The biggest culprits behind impaired driving are alcohol and exhaustion. We all know that it’s important to stay away from driving when we’ve had alcohol, but did you know that being tired can have a similar effect?
If you start falling asleep while on the road, your chances of getting into an accident skyrocket. Even a few seconds of nodding off are enough to cause a problem. It’s better to find a safe place to park your car for twenty minutes and take a small nap than to risk falling asleep.
Extreme anger is another impairment when you’re driving. It makes you take risks and not pay attention as you’re consumed by the anger. Take a few minutes to calm down and regain your composure before starting up the car!
4. Look at the Bigger Picture
If you’re trying to learn safe driving tips for beginners, then this tip is the best one to remember. When we start driving, it’s easy to focus on the small details in front of us. We focus on the cars in front of us or only the stretch of road in our immediate vicinity.
The problem with that is that driving requires you to always have an idea of the bigger picture around you. It’s important to know what the cars around you are doing, but you also need to keep an eye on the cars further away. You need to know what to expect from every car on the road so that you can react accordingly.
Without that bigger picture view, you won’t have as much time to prepare your reaction and this leads to dangerous situations.
5. Stay Out of Bad Weather
Bad weather impairs our driving by making it harder to see or turning the roads into slippery traps. Whenever possible, try to avoid going out in bad weather at all.
This isn’t always possible, so you must take extra care whenever you do venture out during that storm. Drive under the speed limit and make sure to keep up with the weather forecast so that you don’t get caught outside if the weather gets worse!
6. Dim Your Dashboard
One of the easiest tips for safe driving at night is to lower the brightness of the screens on your dashboard. Many new vehicles come equipped with useful screens that let us know all kinds of information. The problem is that these screens can end up being a distraction and an eyesore when you’re trying to drive in the dark.
By lowering their brightness, you’re making it much easier for you to focus on the road in front of you rather than the lights from the dashboard.
7. Take Frequent Breaks
It’s mentally exhausting to go for a long drive. This slows down your reaction time and you’ll start getting sloppy with your decisions if you don’t take proper breaks.
Make a new rule for yourself that for every couple of hours of driving, you’ll take at least a half-hour break to revitalize your senses and stretch your muscles. It’s the perfect time to go to the bathroom or get a bite to eat, too.
These few minutes make a huge difference in the way you perform behind the wheel and will keep you and your passengers far safer for the next leg of the journey.
Use These Tips for Safe Driving Every Time You Start Your Vehicle
To get the most out of these tips for safe driving, it’s best to come back and read through them all again from time to time. As we get more experienced while we drive, it’s easy to slip into bad habits. The problem is that you don’t want to let that experience and comfort with driving turn into laziness.
By staying vigilant, you’ll be one step ahead of the curve and will remain far safer behind the wheel.
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