- Posted by Sanderson Lincoln
- On January 24, 2018
All the great new features in today’s cars make it easy to get distracted from the most important aspects of driving: the safety of yourself and your passengers. Most of us are inundated with tips for safe driving when we first get our license, but it’s easy to develop bad habits as time goes on. Make a resolution to increase your safety on the road this year by keeping these top 10 safe driving tips in mind.
1.) Consider Bringing Snacks and Water Especially
This isn’t a big deal for a little trip just down the street but could make a massive difference on road trips and longer commutes. The Arizona heat is on even in the winter, and a bottle of water can prevent you from getting dehydrated. Becoming too hungry or thirsty behind the wheel can make you distracted and more accident-prone.
2.) Don’t Slow Down to Inspect Accidents
It’s a relatively standard response to want to see what happened and make sure everyone is alright. Unfortunately, this increases the danger that you’ll be in an accident yourself. While you should always slow down if there are first responders or traffic in the road, it’s best to keep your eyes on the road and maintain a steady speed.
3.) Invest in Hands-Free Phone and GPS Technology
Modern technology completely removes the need to mess around with a map or phone while driving. Leverage your electronics to keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road. There are countless voice-activated products capable of reading your directions and texts to you.
4.) Pull off the Road to Address Pressing Distractions
If the kids just won’t stop fighting in the back seat and you need to engage with them, don’t do it while operating a vehicle at 60 miles per hour. The same goes for taking phone calls or sending time-sensitive text messages (unless you have a hands-free device). It’s also worth taking a break for a few minutes to eat or drink. Not only will that keep you safe, it will keep your car cleaner too!
5.) Drive with a Level Head
According to a city profile by Automatic, Phoenix has the most aggressive drivers in the country. Emotional driving clouds your judgement and makes you a danger to yourself and others. If you become too fed up with rush hour traffic or the person who just cut you off, pull off to the side of the road and take a breather. The same suggestion applies to any sort of distracted driving whether it’s from hunger, stress, or exhaustion. Try to avoid emotional conversations while behind the wheel.
6.) Wear Your Seat Belt
No one plans to get into an accident, and they often happen in the blink of an eye, so the only way to be prepared is to buckle up every time you’re in a car. Many modern cars beep at you until you comply with this rule, but you should be wearing your seat belt regardless. It might save your life, and it will definitely set a good example for any kids who are in the car.
7.) Obey Traffic Laws
Sometimes traffic laws seem like they exist just to inconvenience us and make us late, but that’s definitely not the case. Traffic laws are carefully crafted to keep us safe, and many traffic laws are statistically proven to reduce accidents. Even if you don’t think a particular law is very useful, it’s best to follow it anyway. If for no other reason, this will make you more predictable for other drivers and help prevent them from running into you.
8.) Come to a Full Stop
Failing to come to a complete stop is lazy driving, and doesn’t save you any time. All it does is increase your risk of getting a ticket or getting into an accident.
9.) Use Your Hazard Lights When Needed
When you’re dropping someone off or picking someone up, use your hazard lights so other drivers are aware that your vehicle is stopped. This prevents you from getting rear-ended, and it also keeps you and your passengers safe when you’re getting into and out of the car. You never know if the person behind you is attentive or distracted, and the hazard lights are a great way to make sure you get their attention.
10.) Get Regular Service to Keep Your Vehicle Safe
This is one of the most important safe driving tips, and one of the easiest to overlook. If your car isn’t perfectly road ready, you’re much more at risk for accidents. Get regular checkups to make sure critical components are still functional. Not only is it unsafe to wait too long between getting service, it can also shorten the lifespan of your car.
You can check on some aspects of your car by yourself. For example, you can test your signals and your lights by turning them on in your driveway and getting out of the car to make sure they’re working. Learn how to check your tire pressure if you don’t know already. Tire pressure can fluctuate even with relatively small changes in temperature, so we at Sanderson recommend you check it at least once per month.