March is National Collision Awareness Month, and Shawn Tucker from AutoTrader.com shared this safety announcement. Whether traveling for the spring break holiday, or driving around town, here are a few safe driving tips:
Avoid Multi-Tasking – The cell phone has been the most recent target of blame, but any distraction is a hazard to you and to others. Some examples you could try to eliminate or reduce are: reading, eating, hair / make-up, television, adjusting music, rubber-necking, text messaging, and of course, cell phones. If you must talk on the phone use a hands-free device so you can still keep two hands on the wheel.
Enjoy the View – Also known as rubbernecking, braking to look at an accident or something on the side of the road is dangerous and distracts you distracted from keeping your eyes on the cars in front of you. If something is worth taking a good look at, go ahead and stop on the side of the road.
Keep It Clean – One of the best ways to feel good about your car, and sometimes yourself, is to have a clean car. It not only provides a good personal image but, by keeping that empty bottle of soda from rolling under your brake pedal, it also improves your safety.
Be (more) Courteous – Find opportunities to make driving a better experience for everyone. Yielding rather than speeding to cut someone off, or letting a car over that has their blinker on, can help make the commute easier and may prevent them from driving defensively.
Lights On (in the daytime) – Research shows that driving with your headlights on during the day can substantially reduce accidents because it greatly improves your visibility to pedestrians and other drivers. If your vehicle does not come equipped with daytime running lights, get into the habit of turning them on and off, it can be as natural has putting on and taking off your seatbelt.
Don’t Drive Impaired – A little preparation can eliminate a world of trouble. Designated drivers, taxis, walking, public transportation, or having someone drop you off and pick you up are just a few of the safer options.
Remember (and use) the Basics – You may not feel the need to keep your hands at 9 and 3 o’clock*, but there are some no-brainers you should always follow to ensure you are safe and in control: seat belts for everyone, mirrors adjusted, proper seat and steering wheel position, safe driving speed, and proper signaling. (* Yes, it used to be 10 and 2 o’clock. New studies show that when driving cars with airbags, it may be safer to move your hands down a little.)
Take Care of Your Car – Checking the tread and air pressure in your tires, good brakes, clean windows, headlights, and taillights are all important not only for getting there, but getting there safely.