We all know the basics of road safety. Stick to the speed limits, be wary of pedestrians, don’t use a hand held mobile phone or drive after drinking alcohol. These are all very important, however there’s a good chance there’s plenty of other things you’re doing that could potentially lead to chaos. Are you guilty of any of the following?
Even if you’re a good driver, unfortunately not everyone that’s on the road is. If you’re involved in an accident speaking to a company like harrybrownlaw.com is the way to go. To avoid this from happening, you need to stay extra vigilant and be aware of what other people are doing on the roads as well as yourself. Here are some things you might be guilty of that make you less safe as a driver.
Eating and Drinking at the Wheel
When you’re on a long journey, sometimes it can be easier to grab a snack or drink while driving rather than pull over and make a stop. But this is a huge distraction. While it wouldn’t land you with a penalty directly (like using a handheld phone or device at the wheel would) if a police officer deems that you’re distracted or not properly in control of the vehicle you will be in trouble. This could be in the form of a fine, penalty points and/ or a jail sentence. Planning long journeys is essential, you’re going to need to eat and use the bathroom every couple of hours so have a look on the map for suitable stops.
Playing Loud Music
Driving fast down the freeway with your favorite music playing on a sunny day is one of life’s little joys. But it might be worth turning the stereo down a little. It’s also a major distraction, and also makes you less aware of your surroundings when you can’t hear what’s going on. You shouldn’t drive wearing headphones for the same reason. There’s nothing wrong with listening to music, a podcast or audiobook while you’re in the car. But make sure it’s not taking your concentration away from the road.
Driving When You’re Tired
Whether it’s driving to work half asleep in the morning, or trying to make it home after a long trip, you’ve probably been tired behind the wheel at one time or another. However it’s so important to avoid doing this, tiredness really can kill. Falling asleep at the wheel can cause major multi-car collisions, involving and killing a number of people including yourself. Take rest breaks, staying over the night in a motel and carrying on your journey fresh is one option. Having a power nap followed with plenty of coffee at a safe and legal place to stop your car is another. If you’re just a bit drowsy, opening the window and allowing cool air to circulate can help to wake you up.
Not Making Vehicle Checks Before Long Journeys
It’s not just your driving that can cause accidents, but your car itself. If it breaks down in an awkward place it could cause a traffic jam, cause someone to go into the back of you or worse. Make sure your car has enough oil, washer fluid and the tyre tread and pressure is correct. Test all of the lights on your car making sure that none of the bulbs are out- if other drivers cant see you breaking or signaling then it can lead to disaster. Having a warning triangle and some breakdown supplies in the car such as a blanket, flashlight and even some food can make things easier if you do end up breaking down.
Not Getting Faults Looked at Quickly
If a warning light goes on or something doesn’t seem quite right, it can be tempting to just put it off if the car still starts and drives. But ignoring that weird squeaking sound, the fact that the car isn’t handling properly or anything else is a seriously bad idea. You might be put off going to a garage due to the high cost, but ignore problems and you will either break down, cause and accident or cause more damage to the car. Get anything addressed as soon as it crops up.
Not Brushing Up on The Highway Code
As an experienced driver, you probably think you know all that there is to know about the roads. But things can change, and keeping up to date as well as brushing up on your knowledge is no bad thing. You could take a free online test and see how you do, or have a look through a copy of the highway code if you have one knocking around at home.