Experienced and inexperienced drivers alike occasionally make mistakes while driving. Operating a vehicle is a complicated task that must not be underestimated. Between controlling your speed, navigating the roads, watching out for other drivers, and interpreting traffic signals, drivers are bombarded with decisions and information every time they get behind the wheel.
The following are several common mistakes that drivers make and easy ways to avoid them.
Always buckle up. Using your seatbelt will drastically prevent the occurrence of serious injury or death if you are involved in an accident. Never operate your vehicle or ride as a passenger without wearing your seatbelt. Always insist that all of your passengers wear their seat belts while you are driving.
Put away your cell phone. It is now common knowledge that texting while driving is as likely or more likely to cause an accident as driving under the influence of alcohol. Never use your cell phone while operating a vehicle. If your phone rings, find a safe location to pull off of the road before answering the call.
Rid yourself of all distractions. As an inexperienced driver, it is imperative that you get rid of distractions before taking control of the wheel. Ask your passengers to stay quiet and to wait until you reach your destination before engaging in conversation. Do not feel that it is rude to ask you passengers to put away their cell phones also if you feel that hearing them talk on the phone might distract you. Never eat or drink while driving. Keep your car tidy.
Set all of your vehicle’s controls before you begin to drive. Change the radio station, set your GPS device, adjust the seat, and adjust the heat settings before you begin to drive. Pushing buttons and turning knobs takes your eyes off of the road and your hands off of the wheel.
Use your turn signals. Not only is it courteous to inform other drivers of your intentions to turn, it is also the law. Turn signals prevent accidents. Make sure that you deactivate your turn signal after you have made the turn so that other drivers will not become confused.
Obey the speed limits. Speeding is never a good idea, even if you are in a hurry. Speed limits are in place to keep you safe. Drive at a speed that is slightly below the posted speed limit to keep yourself and other drivers out of danger.
Stop at stop signs. It is very important to come to a complete stop at every stop sign that you encounter. A rolling stop will get you a ticket and possibly cause you to become involved in an accident. Also, pay special attention to other drivers at four-way stops to prevent confusion.
Check you blind spots. Driver laziness is the cause of many accidents that happen while merging. Use your mirrors and physically turn your head to check the spots that your mirrors do not reflect. There is no substitution for checking your blind spots.
The number one rule for safe driving is to pay attention. Stay alert, keep your mind on the task of driving, and put your knowledge of safe driving techniques to use every time you get behind the wheel.