Defensive Driving

defensive driving
Today more than ever drivers need to be vigilant behind the wheel. It seems people are doing almost everything but paying attention to the road when driving.

Have you ever been at a stop light that turns green and the car in front of you has no clue what’s going on and then you notice their thumbs are moving like crazy texting or twittering at the light? These are the people that we all share the road with in larger numbers each day, and you need defensive driving skills than can save your life more than ever.

Not only do automobile accidents injure and even kill many thousands of people on an annual basis, but it has an immeasurable impact on the economy. Beyond the obvious rate hikes by insurers, vehicular incidents erase about 2.6% of the nation’s GDP – or gross domestic product.

That adds up to tens of billions per year. Automobile accidents leave deep emotional scars, sometimes for life, leaving many drivers in a constant state of panic about the possibility of another crash at any moment.

Also, vehicular accident deaths, while declining in numbers thanks to safer cars, leave families devastated emotionally and often financially. The frustrating truth is most of these incidents are entirely preventable if people would just obey the traffic laws and drive defensively.

What Exactly is Defensive Driving?

Most people don’t even know what defensive driving is or how to put it into practice. In simple terms, defensive driving is actively implementing safe driving procedures and proven techniques that will significantly reduce the risk of getting into an accident.

It also is a mindset of being a diligent motorist and always being prepared for any situation that could occur. Lastly, it means being an intelligent driver and not doing stupid things like texting while driving which could put the lives of those on the road in jeopardy. Check out some common sense tips on how you can become a better defensive minded motorist.

Strictly Focus on Driving when you Drive
I’m sure you’ve heard the news about self-driving automobiles. Many people predict that in just 20 years, most of the new vehicles will drive themselves, and people will not even need to learn how to drive. While this might happen in the future, today’s driver is still controlling the shots behind the wheel.

All drivers who control a moving vehicle should have a strict focus on driving responsibly and defensively; this means not worrying about a distraction like a text message or even changing the radio. Always stay focused while driving and you will significantly reduce the chance of getting into a crash.

Stay Alert to Everything
You should continuously scan the road in front of you at all times and look for any danger signs while operating a vehicle; this includes studying ahead of you, in the back through your rear view and side mirrors, besides staying alert to what’s next to you. Also, you should look as far ahead as possible for any unusual situations that are approaching.

Many people just look at the car directly in front of theirs; this means if a crash happens 5 or 6 cars ahead, they might not have enough time to react properly and likely will end up part of the accident scene. You should also stay alerted to those who share the road with automobiles; this means bicycles, pedestrians, skateboarders, joggers, scooters and especially animals, who are totally unpredictable. So prepare for everything, you never know what is going to happen when you drive.

Have an Escape Plan in Mind

You should always have an escape plan in mind when driving; this means being able to slow down in time if the car in front of you suddenly slammed on the brakes. It also includes means positioning your vehicle in an area that gives you enough room to make quick adjustments. Many competent driver instructors recommend the middle lane because it gives two escape options. Always have a plan of escape behind the wheel and give yourself room to escape.

Do Not Follow Too Close or Tailgate
Never get too close to other drivers on any street and if you are out on the freeway, this practice could be deadly. While some driver safety books recommend having a 2-second safe space between your car and the vehicle in front of you, it is much safer if you have 3 or 4 seconds of a gap. You need to be able to safely brake and avoid a rear-end collision at all times. Remember, defensive driving is a mindset that requires you to put yourself in the best position possible to remain safe and incident free.

Never Speed
An enormous percentage of accidents and deaths each year are directly linked to speeding. To put it simply, reckless speed kills, so you need to obey all designated posted speed limits and stay alive.

Defensive Driving and Automobile Insurance
Defensive Driving can not only keep you alive, but it can save you lots of money. If you take a safe driving class, most insurers will give you a discount up to 10% off your ins bill. If you have an accident free driver record, you can get some of the lowest rates available, this is because insurance companies charge based on risk and safe drivers are much less risky to insure. So defensive driving makes sense for so many reasons. Get a free quote from good to go insurance and save up to 55% of your car insurance premiums today.