All posts tagged defensive driving

Cocktail of Danger: How to Avoid Accidents on the Road

Accidents on the road are frighteningly common, and you’ll never know when they will happen. But there are ways to diminish the chances of these accidents happening, and these tips could potentially save your life.

Drive Defensively

It is important when driving to remember that even if you do have the right of way, or the law is on your side in some other way, it will not matter in an accident. Make sure that you look beyond the laws of the road to avoid an accident. In a perfect world, everyone on the road would follow every traffic law, but this is not the case. Drivers run red lights, perform rolling stops at stop signs, exceed the speed limit, change lanes without signaling, etc. None of this can be prevented by you as another driver, you must simply recognize that this is happening and stay out of the way of a reckless driver who may cause you harm.

Limit Distractions

Although this may seem like a fairly obvious point, it’s a point which is lost on many new and experienced drivers. Make sure that when you get into your car, you put your cell phone and other pieces of mobile technology far enough away from you that you cannot reach it while driving. If you listen to the radio while you are driving, try to choose a station and then stick with that station. Moving your eyes away from the road for only a split second can have disastrous consequences. It is essential that you maintain focus on the road at all times. If you need to take or make a call, pull over to do so.

Use Your Mirrors

When driving, it is easy to only focus on what is in front of your vehicle, it is of utmost importance that you do not fall into this habit. The mirrors which are provided in your vehicle are there for a reason. You must know what is going on around your vehicles on all sides at all times. As difficult as this sounds, it becomes intuitive after falling into this habit.

Avoid Impairment

Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is not only dangerous but a serious legal offense. While many people believe that they can have a few drinks and then drive home without issue, even light drinking can put one over the legal limit. Even if you stay beneath the legal limit, in Georgia you could be deemed "less safe" and charged with driving under the influence to the extent that you are less safe behind the wheel (learn more at The best way to avoid this is to abstain from alcohol if you plan to drive later or call a taxi if you’ve been drinking and need to get somewhere.

Anticipate Every Possibility
When you drive, you need to foresee the actions of other drivers and pedestrians before they perform the action. It is also important that you see and recognize the behaviors of pedestrians, to make sure they do not accidently put themselves in peril of being struck by your vehicle. Make sure that your eyes are constantly moving around and assessing what could happen in the next few seconds.

Accidents on the road are a terrifying thing. They are unforeseeable, and they happen in a split second. Luckily for us, there are actions we can take to minimize the risk of being in a situation which could result in an accident.

Shiny New Motorcycle? Follow These 4 Rules to Stay Safe

A brand new motorcycle can give you a sense of freedom unlike anything else in the world, but these vehicles will never be as safe as cars. With virtually no protection, drivers must take their safety into their own hands. If you have recently purchased a new motorcycle and are ready to hit the road, read ahead for a look at four rules that will keep you as safe as possible.

1. Never Ride Without Gear

Wearing a DOT-approved helmet at all times will reduce your risk of death by 37 percent in the event of an accident. In addition to a helmet, every rider should invest in a comfortable and durable set of riding gear. These sets include motorcycle boots, gloves, and leathers with metal reinforcement. Even if you are just running down the street to the store, you should have your riding gear on at all times.

2. Assume That Other Drivers Don’t See You

No matter what type of vehicle you are in, it is always a good idea to drive defensively. When it comes to motorcycles, however, riders should assume that all other drivers do not see them or do not know how to react to them. Some of the most common accidents can easily be prevented if drivers double-check their blind spots and riders assume they are always in a driver’s blind spot.

3. Always Start With a Safety Course

Taking a safety course is the single best thing that a rider can do to protect themselves, and that is why some states have even made these courses mandatory. In addition to teaching you the nuances of riding, these courses can also connect you with experts in the field such as motorcycle accident attorneys in Phoenix and motorcycle mechanics that could be invaluable in your future.

4. Skip Bad Weather Rides

There are very few safety features on a motorcycle that are designed to assist a rider in bad weather. Even a small amount of snow, rain, or high winds can wreak havoc on your ride and dramatically increase your risk of having an accident. This is especially important for longer rides when you might experience much different weather a few hours into your journey.

There is no surefire way to prevent 100 percent of accidents, but riders that take the time to educate themselves, wear the correct gear, and pay attention to their surroundings will decrease their risk of having a life-altering accident.

Defensive Driving: Techniques to Keep You Safe on the Road

There is always a chance of a serious accident every time you get behind the wheel. Not only are you traveling at high speeds, you also have to keep an eye on everyone else around you. Since so many things can go wrong on the road, the best way to stay safe is to practice defensive driving techniques. While there are dozens of defensive driving techniques, these are the four of the most effective. 

Eliminate Distractions

A distracted driver is far more likely to cause an accident than a driver that is focused on the road. If you regularly eat, talk or text while driving, then it is time to change those harmful tactics. Studies have proven that using a cell phone while driving can reduce reaction times up to 20 percent. Your conversation or meal is not important when you are risking your life and the lives of everyone else on the road is not

Stay in One Lane

It is far easier to remain safe when remaining in one lane on the road. Changing lanes requires you to change your focus, which is always dangerous on the road. You also have to rely on the other drivers seeing you changing lanes, which is always a dangerous proposition. It is impossible to go anywhere without ever changing lanes, but you should do it as little as possible.

Do Not Tailgate

Tailgating the car in front of you is one of the most dangerous things you can do while driving. You need to have plenty of room between cars in case you need to suddenly react to avoid an accident. If you are tailgating and the car in front of you suddenly hits the breaks, then you are not going to have enough time to slow down to avoid hitting them. You should be at least three to four seconds behind the car in front of you on the road, and this number should be doubled during poor driving conditions.

Be Aware of Surroundings

Defensive driving only works if you are looking out for everyone else on the road. A bad driver can always hit your car while you are driving extremely carefully. The only way to constantly stay safe is to keep an eye on your fellow drivers, especially if any appear to be driving erratically. If you are constantly expecting the other drivers to do something dangerous, then you will always be prepared for anything that can happen.

Getting to your destination safely should be your top priority every time you sit behind the wheel. If you use these four defensive driving techniques, then you should be safe no matter what you experience on the road.

Informational Credit to Moses and Rooth, Attorneys at Law

Road Rage: Defensive Driving Tips Everyone Needs to Know

You probably learned about defensive driving in your driver’s education course back in high school, but it never hurts to brush up on the finer details. Here are a few tips for being a responsible, defensive driver.  

Eliminate Distractions

You might need to make a few sacrifices if you’re going to eliminate all external distractions from your driving. Wake up a few minute earlier so you have time eat breakfast before you leave for work instead of on the go. Put the phone away—don’t text or even talk on the phone while you’re driving. If music distracts you, or you’re a habitual radio surfer, turn it off.

Expand Your Focus

Don’t focus on the car directly in front of you. The narrower your focus, the more likely you’ll be to miss crucial warning signs three, or four, or ten cars ahead of you. Keep your eyes scanning the horizon instead, and you’ll have more time to react to potentially dangerous situations.

Don’t Be a Lane Changer

As often as possible, choose a lane on the highway and stick to it. Don’t weave in and out of traffic—you’ll only increase your and other drivers’ risk of collision. You’ll also avoid sending other drivers into a road rage if you share the road, and keep to yourself instead of invading others’ personal driving space.

Check Blind Spots Faithfully

They teach you about blind spots in Drivers’ Ed, but don’t think it’s a principle for beginning drivers only. Even if you’re pretty sure there’s no one in your blind spot, check it anyway, every time you change lanes. The one time you neglect to check your blind spot, could mean a nasty accident that might cost you and another driver mechanical repairs and hospital bills.

On another note, be careful to stay out of others’ blind spots as much as possible. You never know when someone is going to change lanes without looking, and you want to be well out of the way if that happens.

Look Both Ways

Whether you’ve been stopped at a red light, or are coming up to an intersection with the right of way, look both ways before you blaze through. If another driver runs a red light, you need to be on the defensive to avoid a collision. Be aware of other drivers’ potential mistakes at all times.

Avoid Bad Drivers

Don’t succumb to road rage. Sharing the road with aggressive drivers can be frustrating, but instead of trying to keep your temper in check, just distance yourself from a bad driver whenever possible. Change lanes, take a different route, or let them pull ahead of you when it’s convenient.

Don’t Tailgate

The most important part of being a defensive driver is, rather obviously, not being aggressive. Stay a respectful distance behind the car you’re following. Keep an eye out for tailgaters of your own, too—if the car behind you is riding your bumper, do your best to open up a way to let them pass you.

Pedestrian Safety

Drive defensively, yes, but take extra precautions as a pedestrian as well. Pedestrians are most often injured as a result of the following incidents:

  • Drivers failing to observe posted speed limits
  • Bad weather conditions
  • Drivers who ignore traffic signals
  • Drivers failing to yield right of way at marked crosswalks
  • A driver’s failure to stop before turning right at a red light
  • Drunk driving

The best thing you can do to keep yourself safe as a pedestrian is to be aware of the drivers on the road. Before you step out onto the crosswalk, look both ways and make eye contact with any oncoming cars. Don’t wear dark clothing when you’re out walking at night, keep a close eye on children around busy streets, and always face oncoming traffic if you are forced to walk in the street.

Firms like Cummings Andrews Mackay LLP, accident lawyers in Edmonton, covers cases ranging from car and motorcycle accidents to pedestrian incidents. If you’ve been injured either as a pedestrian or driver, contact a local office and start discussing your options. If you were not at fault, you will be eligible for compensation for your injuries.

The road is a dangerous place, and you’ll need to be on your guard if you’re going to avoid accidents. Drive responsibly, and avoid aggression both in yourself and other drivers as much as possible. Be aware of what is going on around you, and you’ll be much more likely to make it to and from your destinations safely.

Defensive Driving Tips For City Dwellers

Defensive driving can be one of the most important skills to learn when preparing to drive. If you utilize defensive driving as often as possible, you lower your risk of being in an accident greatly. Defensive driving is especially important to those who drive in a city setting. Driving in an urban area is one of the most dangerous and frustrating places to drive. Because of amount of traffic, frustrated drivers, and other distractions that can be found in a city, defensive driving is one of the only ways to ensure you do not become a victim of another driver’s ignorance or irresponsibility.

Hazards of Driving

There are many different things that can be hazardous to drivers, especially in a city setting. Aggressive drivers are dangerous and plentiful on clogged roads. In addition to aggressive drivers, there are also distracted drivers. Distracted drivers are becoming more and more of an issue with the rise in electronic device usage behind the wheel. Unfortunately many drivers believe that they are actually able to multitask well, which can be a very dangerous practice for any driver.

How to Handle Hazards

You are never able to control other driver’s actions, but you can control how you respond to them. The most important part of being a defensive driver is being alert. When you pay attention to other drivers, you are able to anticipate problems before they happen. This allows you to react before a problem starts. This is especially important for speeders and people who cut people off recklessly. When you are dealing with an aggressive driver, your best course of action is to slow down and allow the person to pass you. Be sure to allow a good amount of space between the aggressive driver and yourself before you continue at normal speeds.

Victim of Others

If you find yourself to be a victim of another driver’s aggressive or distracted driving, be sure to gather as much information as you can, as soon as you can. Call local police to the scene, take pictures, and get information about the other driver. Be sure to note any weird or standout behaviors from the other driver. If anyone witnessed the accident, be sure to take their name and phone number. After collecting all the information you can, be sure to contact a lawyer to see what you are entitled to as a victim. Oshawa law firms can help you to determine fault and give you peace of mind as a driver.

There are many hazards that your average city driver must face day to day. Aggressive and distracted drivers make defensive driving a must for every driver’s daily commute. Be sure to be alert and pay attention to other drivers. If you have the right defensive skills you can reduce the chance of getting into an accident.

“Brooke Chaplan is a freelance writer and blogger. Her hobbies include gardening, hiking and biking. For this article she used Kitchen Simeson LLP lawyers as a resource. For more information contact Brooke via Twitter @BrookeChaplan.”