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8 Safe Driving Habits

 

 

Whether you are a new driver or you've been behind the wheel for several decades, there are always new tips and tricks you can use to increase safety. At Community Honda, we've created a few of the top safe driving habits drivers of all skill levels can incorporate. Continue reading to learn more and don't hesitate to reach out to our team for automotive solutions. 


Don't Drive If You're Tired

Tired driving is extremely dangerous. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 100,000 automobile accidents are the result of tired drivers. While drunk driving is usually the focal point of safety campaigns — rightly so — drowsy driving can have similar effects as drinking alcohol. 

Did you know that being awake for 18 straight hours can make one drive as if they have a blood-alcohol level of .05? To put this into perspective, .08 is considered drunk. And if you have been awake for a full 24 hours and decide to drive, it's equivalent to having a blood alcohol of .10. In short, you should never drive if you have been drinking, and you should avoid driving if you are tired or drowsy. 


Use Your Turn Signals

Whether a vehicle is behind you or not, you should always use your turn signal to indicate your intent to change lanes or turn. You shouldn't, however, simply activate your turn signals and expect others to let you in. If the other driver is checking their radio or not paying attention, they may not see your turn signal. The best solution is to patiently wait for a gap to open up before making your move. 


Be Defensive with Your Driving

Defensive driving is a practice that utilizes safe driving strategies to empower you to identify hazards and predictably avoid them. These key strategies will go well beyond basic traffic laws and procedures. When you effectively engage in defensive driving, you will work to reduce risks by anticipating situations and making well-informed decisions. 

One way you can learn or brush up on the latest defensive driving tactics and skills is by taking a course. And there are many different courses available to take in different formats. No matter which course you choose, you'll learn to reduce the risk of collision, anticipate dangerous situations, and other key safety techniques. 


Watch Your Own and Avoid Other Vehicle's Blind Spots

Even if you have the best backup cameras and state-of-the-art blind spot monitor, it's always a good idea to stay in the know of what's in your blind spots. However, this is only the beginning. You can take it one step farther by working to stay out of the blind spots of other vehicles to the right and left of you. This becomes increasingly important when driving around large trucks that have more expansive blind spots. 


Mitigate Tailgating Risk

It can be infuriating when someone follows you too closely or tailgates your vehicle. It's not only rude, but it can be extremely dangerous. If you notice someone is tailgating you, you can proactively take steps to minimize the risks. Simply add two times as much space between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you. This strategy will help you potentially spot a collision and give you time to respond. If possible, you can always pull over and allow the tailgater to pass or move into the right lane. 


Watch Your Speed

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that speed was a factor in an astonishing 27% of motor vehicle accidents in 2016. Anytime you decide to speed, you reduce the amount of time you have to react to an event that may happen or object that may dart in front of your vehicle. However, simply saying "I am not going to speed" isn't really a solution. Instead, it's best to change your action. For example, you can:

  • Use cruise control whenever applicable
  • Leave earlier to give yourself more time 
  • Pay attention to your speed so you can know how fast you're actually going. 


Stay Focused on the Road

Today, you have more in-vehicle distractions than ever. Text messages, emails, phone calls, checking directions, changing the radio station, and even talking to passengers are all distractions that can cause you to take your eyes off the road. And all it takes is a mere three seconds for an accident to happen. While many of today's vehicles come equipped with a myriad of advanced safety devices — including emergency braking — nothing substitutes your undivided attention. 


Look Past the Vehicle in Front of You

We get it — it's important to understand what the vehicle in front of you is doing. However, you shouldn't stop there. Attempt to scan two or three car lengths ahead of this vehicle. When you do, you'll be more capable of processing stoplights, upcoming road conditions, bicyclists, pedestrians, and other key information. Also, when you pay attention to the road in this manner, you'll be more likely to see dangerous situations and have more time to properly respond. 


Contact Community Honda Today

As a driver, many things are completely out of your control. There are, however, several safe driving habits and proactive steps you can take to prevent auto accidents. The experts at Community Honda have outlined a few of our top safe driving habits you can use to help ensure you arrive at your destination and back home safely. 

Contact Community Honda today.