Top Defensive Driving Techniques

April 20, 2023 Posted In Car Accidents

Defensive driving is an essential skill that every driver should possess. By adopting these top techniques, you can ensure not only your safety but also the safety of others on the road. 

Top Defensive Driving Techniques

Remain Alert

Constantly being aware of your surroundings is one of the most important defensive driving techniques. Always scan the road ahead, the cars around you, and any potential hazards such as pedestrians, cyclists, or animals. By doing so, you can anticipate any potential dangers and avoid them before they become a problem.

Keep a Safe Distance

Maintaining a safe distance from other vehicles on the road can ensure you have enough time to react to any sudden changes in traffic. A general rule of thumb is to keep a distance of at least three seconds from the car in front of you.

Avoid Distractions

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of car accidents. To avoid them, refrain from using your phone, eating, or engaging in any other activity that takes your attention away from the road. If you need to make a call or send a text, pull over to a safe location before doing so.

Use Turn Signals

Using your turn signals is another crucial defensive driving technique. When changing lanes or turning, alerting other drivers of your intentions can prevent accidents caused by abrupt movements.

Stay Within the Speed Limit

Speeding is a primary cause of accidents and traffic fatalities. Staying within the speed limit and adjusting your speed based on road and weather conditions can significantly reduce the risk of a collision. Doing so will give you more time to slow down or stop your vehicle if necessary and gives you more control over your vehicle. Also, keep in mind that speed limits are not recommended targets but a maximum speed that should not be exceeded.

Avoid Blind Spots

Blind spots are areas around a vehicle that you cannot see directly through mirrors or windows and can pose a significant risk for accidents. When you change lanes, merge, or turn, not being aware of your or other vehicles’ blind spots can lead to collisions. Performing shoulder checks is crucial when changing lanes or merging. Also, try not to stay in another vehicle’s blind spot for too long in case they do not check before changing lanes or merging. 

Be Prepared for Emergencies

While driving, there are several emergencies that you may face, such as a flat tire, a dead battery, or an engine malfunction. When you are prepared for emergencies, you are less likely to panic. Panic can impair your judgment and cause you to make rash decisions, increasing the risk of an accident. Being prepared gives you the confidence and ability to handle an emergency calmly and effectively. For example, keep items such as a first aid kit, a flashlight, a spare tire, a reflective warning triangle, or flares in your car and your phone charged. Knowing how to change a tire and jump-start your vehicle can also be helpful. If you need help after a car accident, our Riverside car accident attorneys are here to help.

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