Improvements in technology continue to bring down road fatalities. However, most car accidents happen as a result of human error. The best way to reduce your risk is by practicing safe driving habits.
Don’t forget these key life-saving rules for the road:
- Don’t drink. This one seems obvious, but drunk driving continues to take many lives each year. Nearly one-third of all auto fatalities in the United States involve a drunk driver.
- Drive the speed limit. Did you know that driving 10 mph over the speed limit increases your crash risk by as much as 50%?
- Use seatbelts. Wearing seatbelts is one of the simplest yet most effective ways to reduce the risk of injury in a car accident. Ensure that all passengers, including those in the backseat, are buckled up before you start driving. Seatbelts provide a crucial line of defense in the event of a collision.
- Stay focused. There’s a reason why so many states have banned the use of cell phones while driving. It’s estimated that 1 out of every 4 car accidents in the U.S. is due to texting while driving. Studies also show that talking on a cell phone while driving—even by using a hands-free device—can increase your odds of having an accident.
- Obey traffic rules. Traffic rules exist to maintain order on the roads and ensure the safety of all drivers. Adhering to speed limits, stopping at red lights, using turn signals, and yielding the right of way are fundamental aspects of responsible driving. By obeying these rules, you contribute to a safer driving environment for yourself and others.
- Maintain your vehicle. Regular vehicle maintenance is crucial for preventing accidents caused by mechanical failures. Ensure your brakes, tires, lights, and other essential components are in good working condition. Regular oil changes, brake checks, and tire rotations can go a long way in preventing unexpected malfunctions that could lead to accidents.
- Be mindful of blind spots. Check your blind spots regularly by using your mirrors and turning your head to ensure no vehicles are in the areas you can’t see. This practice helps avoid collisions when changing lanes or making turns.
Reducing the chances of being in a car accident requires a combination of awareness, responsibility, and adherence to safety measures. You can contribute to a safer road environment for yourself and others. Remember, every driver plays a crucial role in preventing accidents and promoting a culture of safety on our roads. Drive responsibly, arrive safely, and make our roads a better place for everyone.