Safe Driving and Accident Avoidance
Safe driving and accident avoidance have a direct and irrefutable connection to one another. Statistically speaking, any time you sit down in the driver’s seat to drive anywhere, you run the risk of getting into an accident. Seasoned drivers that have been at it for awhile understand safety and occupational driving or personal driving. But even those of us who have been driving for some time can learn new things about safety that can help us avoid troubles behind the wheel.
Seat Belt Safety
First of all, a word on seat belts is necessary. Putting on your safety belt won’t help you avoid an accident, but it gives you a much greater chance of surviving one. These days, with newer cars coming equipped with airbags, it is more important than ever to wear a seat belt every time you drive. Even if you are just going around the corner to a friend’s house it is important to buckle up, because many accidents happen close to home.
Obey Rules of the Road
Once you are buckled in and the car is in gear, remember to follow the rules of the road. This means staying within the posted speed limits at all times. It also means signaling turns, giving plenty of distance between you and a car ahead of you (a minimum of three seconds in good driving conditions), and generally driving in a courteous and respectful manner. Many drivers have this feeling that they are already doing everything perfectly and that if an accident it is bound to be the other driver’s fault.
But this is only true half the time. And even in cases where another driver technically causes a crash, there might be some things you could have done to avoid the accident. A big part of accident avoidance involves looking out for the other guy on the road. We can’t always anticipate what other drivers are going to do, but if we always assume the worst, we will be prepared for it when it happens and can usually avoid collisions as a result.
Accident Avoidance and Car Insurance
The one thing that has nothing directly to do with safety but that is still extremely relevant to this discussion of accident avoidance is the notion of its effect on car insurance rates. Think about the last time you got into a car accident, if you have ever been in one. If it was your fault, you likely were hit with a big rate increase, and may have even been canceled or non renewed.
Even if the accident was not your fault, some or all of these things might have happened to you nonetheless. We have a great deal of financial incentive to drive safely even to the point of taking responsibility for the other driver, because in doing so we greatly increase our shot at staying accident free and saving on our premiums.
Importance of Driving Safely
There are many reasons why drivers should practice accident avoidance and make it a point to drive safely and defensively. If you are a parent, just keeping your kids safe ought to be reason enough; but as an added incentive, you also get to know that you’re setting a positive example and modeling the driving behavior that you expect to see out of them when they get behind the wheel.
Safe driving and accident avoidance don’t involve some magic formula, and there is nothing we can do to avoid trouble every time. But with an honest effort, you can cut down your risk and improve your chances of avoiding accidents and insurance increases.