Your car is one of the most valuable investments that you’ll make in your lifetime, and one of the best ways to protect it is to practice safe driving. Automotive accidents have the potential to cause serious injury or death. Here are some tips on how you can avoid an automotive accident:
1. Have a Good Posture When Driving
To drive safely, you must have good posture while behind the wheel and be comfortable in your seat. Make sure that you sit up straight, and keep your arms and legs in a relaxed position. This will help you stay focused on the road ahead and keep your reactions quick.
2. Be Aware of Your Surroundings
Always pay attention to what’s going on around you while driving. You can do this by adjusting your mirrors and making sure you are aware of the vehicles close to you. Additionally, be conscious of pedestrians, cyclists, and animals that may cross the road at any given moment.
3. Use Your Turn Signals
Using your turn signals is a must when driving to keep other drivers informed of what you’re doing. Not using them can lead to road rage and potential accidents. So use them whenever you turn, change lanes, or merge.
4. Maintain a Safe Following Distance
Following too closely behind another vehicle increases your chances of getting into an accident. It’s called tailgating. If the driver in front of you suddenly brakes or swerves out of the way, you’ll likely hit them. Keep at least three to four seconds between you and the car in front of you, adding on if it’s raining or snowing.
5. Don’t Drive Tired
Drowsy driving can be just as dangerous as drunk driving because your reaction time is impaired and you may become less attentive while behind the wheel. If you’re tired, have someone drive you or park on the side of the road and take at least 2 hours of sleep.
6. Keep a Safe Speed
Speed limits are in place for a reason, so stick to them and obey the traffic laws when you’re driving. Varying your speed can also be dangerous; in addition to using cruise control, try to maintain a consistent speed as much as possible. Also depending on the driving conditions of the day (rain, snow, etc.), you may want to slow down. The posted speed limit is usually meant for the ideal condition and not necessarily during inclement weather.
7. Avoid the Fast Lane
If you’re on the highway, try to stick to lanes near the right side. The far left lane is usually for passing and it can be dangerous if there are many cars in the fast lane. It’s best to stay in a slower lane if possible, as this will give you more time to react should a situation arise suddenly.
8. Don’t Drive at Night Unless It’s Absolutely Necessary
Driving at night can be challenging and more dangerous than driving during the day. It’s best to avoid it unless you absolutely need to get somewhere. If you do have no choice but to drive at night, make sure your headlights are working properly and always keep a lookout for animals that may enter the road unexpectedly.
9. Don’t Accelerate When It Turns Green
When the light turns green, many people accelerate quickly. This can be dangerous, as other drivers may not be prepared for it or expecting it. Instead of accelerating right away, take a few seconds to make sure no cars are coming from different directions unexpectedly before you begin moving.
10. Look Both Ways Before You Turn
When you’re about to turn, even if the light is green, make sure to look both ways before proceeding. This will help ensure that no oncoming traffic has run a red light or is otherwise coming through the intersection that you weren’t expecting.
11. Pay Attention to Other Road Users
You’re not alone on the road, so be sure to pay attention to the actions of other drivers, bicyclists, pedestrians, and even animals. Make sure you give them enough space when passing and always be prepared for their unpredictable movements.
12. Wait Out Hazardous Driving Conditions
When it’s raining, snowing, or icy outside, it can be more difficult to react quickly to unexpected events. Yeah, you might be confident with the type of car you own and your driving skills but inclement weather can still make driving more hazardous. If possible, try to wait out the bad weather, and don’t be afraid to pull over if you feel it’s too dangerous to continue driving.
Work With Lakeland Ford to Keep Your Car in Top Shape
Your car is your best defense against accidents. That’s why it’s important to have it serviced regularly and checked for any issues that could lead to an accident. At Lakeland Ford, our experienced technicians will make sure you are safe while on the road. We offer a variety of services that include oil changes, tire rotations, brakes, transmissions, and more. When you bring your car in for service, we’ll make sure it’s running smoothly and safely before you head out on the road again.