Prevent Accidents with Safe Driving Habits

Whether you’ve never been in a car accident before, or you’re lucky to have survived one, they happen more often than you’d think. Keeping your car in safe driving condition can be one great way to prevent an accident caused by something that goes wrong on the road, but it’s equally as important to make sure you have safe driving habits. According to the U.S. website for distracted driving, in 2014, over 3,000 people were killed and over 430,000 injured in crashes involving distracted driving.

Avoid using your cell phone while driving.

Phones can also be one of the most distracting devices a driver can use. They delay reactions, take our eyes off the road, and move our focus from driving to other things. In most states, using the phone while driving is illegal. If you aren’t willing to stop driving to check it, it’s not important enough to check while driving.

Setup navigation before you leave.

Whether you use your phone or your vehicle’s own navigation system, set it up before you leave, not while you’re driving. Typing behind the wheel takes your focus and your eyes away from driving.

Don’t drive after consuming alcohol.

Alcohol impairs many abilities, from speech and balance to reaction times and alertness. Don’t risk your life or the lives of others by driving under the influence.

Keep your car at a comfortable temperature.

Whether your car has been sitting outside in the snow or baking in the hot sun, give it time to adjust to a comfortable temperature. If you’re not comfortable while you’re driving, you could be distracted trying to adjust, when you should be focused on driving.

Don’t drive hungry.

Eating and drinking while driving can be distracting, especially if you drop food, spill a drink, or you have to twist lids and open bags and containers. Eat before you drive so you can focus on the road.

Adjust your mirrors.

Your mirrors are there to help you see around your vehicle without turning around to look, but they can’t do their job if they aren’t angled correctly. Your side mirrors should be angled out so you can’t see more than a sliver of your vehicle in order to minimize blind spots.

Get enough rest before you get behind the wheel.

Driving tired, especially at night or on the highway can be extremely hazardous. Plan to get enough sleep before driving, avoid even a small amount of alcohol, and for long drives, share driving duties with another driver.