Many of us have heard the term defensive driving but are not quite sure what the term means. It can almost sound like a negative term, but indeed it is not.
The definition of defensive driving is “a set of driving skills that allows you to defend yourself against possible collisions caused by bad drivers, drunk drivers, and poor weather. If you look ahead and keep your eyes moving, you will spot potential hazards more easily. Once you have identified a potential hazard and decided what to do, act immediately.”
Below are several suggestions to assist you in becoming a better defensive driver.
- Stay focused and alert at all times. You can’t always count on others to be aware of what is going on around them.
- Watch out for other drivers. Don’t just assume that they are going to obey the rules of the road. In fact, have you noticed how many people actually run red lights?
- Follow all rules of the road including speed limit. There are rules and regulations on the road for your safety!
- Limit distractions. This is such a huge detriment to today’s driver. Don’t fiddle with your phone, the radio, food or anything else for that matter. When you are driving is not the time to put on the mascara that you forgot to apply before work!
- Do not tailgate. Allow yourself plenty of time to stop before getting too close to someone and accidentally ramming them from behind!
- Scan all surroundings. Be aware of everything! What about the car you saw speeding a few minutes before. Where did they go? Or the semi truck you spot in your rearview mirror. How close are they getting to you?
- Plan Ahead. Always check weather conditions as well as traffic before heading out on the road. This way you will know if you need to leave earlier so that you are not in a rush during these conditions.
You can’t always control everyone’s actions but you can control yours! A good defensive driver is aware of all the dangers on the road, like texting and driving.