Avoiding Auto Accidents

To help prevent injury to yourself and others on the road there are some preventive measures you can take to lessen the chance that you will be in an accident. The most important thing to remember is to always wear your seatbelt, which help prevent serious injury if you are in an accident.

Obey the Rules of the Road

While behind the wheel of a vehicle you should obey road signs and speed limits. Such restrictions have been set up for safety purposes and should therefore be obeyed. Give other drivers their right of way where necessary.

Use Caution at Intersections

Intersections are particularly dangerous. Use extra caution when traveling through them. You should slow your speed even if your light is green, as not everyone will stop for a red light. Slow for yellow rights, rather than speeding up to catch them. Remember most auto accidents happen at intersections.

Be Extra Cautious in Inclement Weather

When traveling in inclement weather such as fog, rain, sleet or snow, be sure to slow your speed. Increase the following distance between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you. Allow for extra stopping time. Make sure your headlights are on when the sun is not at its brightest to increase visibility.

Avoid Distractions

Driver distractions account for a large percentage of auto accidents. If you have to perform an activity that takes your attention from the road, pull over. Consider getting a hands free device for your cell phone, but keep in mind it is still a distraction. Check your radio settings and mirrors before starting on your trip so you don't have to make adjustments while you are traveling.

Avoid Driving at Night

When the sun goes down, the chances of an accident increase by 50%. Drunk drivers are more likely to be on the road, as are drowsy drivers. You are also more likely to become drowsy when traveling long distances at night, so try to make long trips during the daylight hours.

Don't Drive Drunk

Avoiding drunk driving should go without saying, but as the instances of drunk driving are increasing, it can only help to repeat it. Alcohol will severely impair your judgment and a person should not operate a vehicle after consuming alcohol. With every alcohol beverage a person drinks, the chances of an accident increase greatly.

Keep your Vehicle in Good Condition

Keep up with the routine maintenance of your car. Check your tire pressure and fluid levels on a regular basis. Have your oil changed every 3 months or 3,000 miles to keep your engine running smoothly. Inspect brake lights, turn signals, headlights and reverse lights to ensure they are working properly.

Avoid Negligence

Drive with care. Respect other vehicles on the road. Obey the rules of the road to keep you, your passengers, and other drivers safe. Keep a proper distance between you and the vehicle in front of you, at least 2 car lengths, increasing the space during inclement weather. Allow motorcycles extra room. Don't give in to aggressive driving, and don't retaliate on those who have.

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