Driving is one of life’s many luxuries.
There’s nothing better than becoming the proud new owner of one of the new Toyotas for sale in Utah and enjoying the freedom that owning a car provides. You can drive from one place to another with ease and you have the ability to explore new, exciting locations in your area.
But as with anything, there is a downside to driving. Every time you head out in your car, you’re putting yourself at risk. No matter how experienced you are behind the wheel, there’s always the small chance of something going terribly wrong.
Surprisingly, the average American adult spends more than 100 minutes driving. And with more and more cars appearing on the roads, the risk of finding yourself in a road traffic collision is higher than ever.
When you’re taking your driving lessons, you’re taught various driving techniques that will keep you as safe as possible behind the wheel. You learn how to adjust your driving depending on the conditions of the road or the specific location you’re in.
But over time, you slowly begin to forget a lot of this information. You get comfortable and confident driving your vehicle, and this can lead to you becoming less focused when you’re behind the wheel.
Many road traffic incidents are preventable, but accidents can happen. It only takes a short lapse in your attention or a slight misjudgment for a collision to occur. Car accidents have the potential to cause serious injuries and may result in you racking up an expensive medical bill.
No matter how long you’ve been driving, following these important driving tips will help to keep you (and others) safe on the roads and out of any legal trouble.
- Take Your Vehicle for Regular Maintenance Checks
Taking your vehicle for regular service checks ensures that any unexpected problems within your vehicle can be identified and resolved before they cause issues.
It reduces the risks of you breaking down on the roads and it can also save you a lot of money on repairs and replacements further down the line.
You can check certain aspects of your car by yourself. Take a look under the hood and check the fluid levels. Test all of the lights and indicators to ensure that they are all working. Check the tire pressures and the brake pads to see if they meet your vehicle’s requirements.
- Remove Distractions
It’s illegal to drive with your mobile phone, and this law is in place for a good reason. You will receive a hefty fine and points on your license if you’re caught scrolling on your mobile phone while driving.
When you drive with distractions, you’re much more likely to find yourself in a road traffic accident.
Your reaction times are massively reduced and it can take you up to 20% longer to complete physical or mental tasks when you are distracted. This may only equate to a second or two, but it can be the difference between you having an accident or avoiding one.
Distractions don’t just come in the form of mobile phones. You can get distracted by loud music, sat navs, or even your nagging children in the backseat.
Even hands-free devices can be distracting, and you can still be prosecuted if authorities feel that you aren’t concentrating fully on the road due to being preoccupied with your devices.
- Avoid Tailgating
When the driver in front of you is driving below the speed limit, your instant reaction might be to drive right behind them in the hopes that they get the hint and put their foot down.
But driving this close to somebody else’s car is a recipe for disaster. If they have to slam the brakes on, you will probably end up slamming into the back of their vehicle unless you have superhuman reaction times.
The same applies when the roads are congested. You might get frustrated that the traffic isn’t moving, but make sure you keep your distance. The more space that you have around your vehicle, the less likely you are to collide with another vehicle or a pedestrian.
A good rule of thumb is remaining far enough back so that you can easily see the back tires of the vehicle in front of you.
- Avoid Driving When Tired or Fatigued
Driving while you are tired can significantly increase your risk of having a road traffic accident. When you’re sleepy, your reaction times are much slower and you will find it harder to stay focused on the roads.
If you have a long journey ahead, make sure to take regular breaks. Ideally, you should take a break every 2-3 hours. During your breaks, get some fresh air and stretch your legs or get a bite to eat so you can return to your car feeling refreshed and alert.
Even better, if you’re driving with company and they are insured on the vehicle, take it in turns to drive so you can get some much-needed rest along the way.
- Know Your Signs and Road Markings
You probably had to learn what each road sign and road marking meant before your driving test. But if this was years ago, you may have forgotten some of the less common ones. So, when you’re faced with this sign while you’re driving, you might misinterpret it.
Road signage is there for a reason. It is essential to keep every driver safe. Signs and markings are required to inform drivers of the requirements of the road and to give them a heads-up for any upcoming changes in the road ahead.
When you know what each sign and marking means, you can take the necessary actions in good time, such as moving lanes or slowing down, which reduces your risk of having an accident while driving.