Defensive Driving Techniques

driver with both hands on the steering wheelEvery time you get behind the wheel of your vehicle, you put yourself at potential risk of a severe crash. Of course, these risks are most often there because you can never fully predict the actions of other drivers, not because you make bad decisions on the road.

Before you get in your car or truck, it’s vital for you to recognize the various ways to drive defensively to avoid the potential negligence of other drivers. While you cannot predict the actions of others and how they’ll react on the road, there are things that you can do to give yourself the best chance of getting to your destination without experiencing a crash.

The 10 top defensive driving techniques you’ll learn about in this blog include:

1. Focus on the road and driving
2. Drive like others will make a mistake
3. Follow the speed limits of the road
4. Use your seat belt and other safety devices
5. Always indicate an intention to turn or merge
6. Give space to other drivers around you
7. Never drive in someone else’s blind spots
8. Keep weather and road conditions in mind
9. Always maintain your vehicle as necessary
10. Know what to do if you’re being tailgated

If someone crashes into you, it’s vital to know your rights. Call us today at (800) 294-6637.

1. Focus on the Road and Driving

One of the worst causes of crashes on the road is distracted driving. Unfortunately, even the slightest cognitive distraction can take a driver’s focus away. For instance, a driver who daydreams or looks away to a car on the side of the road can be dangerous.

It’s imperative for all drivers to focus solely on the task at hand. If all drivers look ahead and focus on the road, they can identify signs of danger to stay safe. Focusing on the road lets you prepare for the actions of others, debris on the road, and more, so you can avoid a potential crash.

2. Drive Like Others Will Make a Mistake

While you may be a great driver in your own right, driving defensively means assuming other drivers may make a mistake. Even the best drivers can encounter issues such as road dangers or automotive defects, and accidents can happen.

Keeping yourself safe means assuming that others can make mistakes, and you need to be prepared in the event they do. This means ensuring a good distance to increase your reaction time and your ability to maneuver out of harm’s way.

3. Follow the Speed Limits of the Road

Speed limits are posted for a reason, and even though others may speed, it’s in your best interests to abide by the rules of the road. If someone is driving too fast, you may want to utilize the slower lanes to avoid these potentially dangerous drivers.

When it comes to speed limits, you also want to keep road and weather conditions in mind. When it’s raining or snowing and the roads become slippery, it’s imperative to drive only as fast as safe for the conditions.

4. Use Your Seat Belt and Other Safety Devices

Vehicles are equipped with seat belts, airbags, and other safety devices to ensure you are safe in the event of an accident. Make sure you always wear your seat belt and ensure that your safety devices are activated. While these won’t prevent a crash, they can decrease the severity of injuries you sustain if you are involved in a collision.

5. Always Indicate Your Intention to Turn or Merge

Whenever you need to merge lanes or turn, it’s essential to use your signals to indicate your intention. There are many crashes that arise simply because one driver is not aware of the other’s intentions. As such, they may not brake in time and a collision occurs.

Make sure you use your indicator soon enough to allow the other driver to react.

6. Give Space to Other Drivers Around You

We know you may not have much control over how much space is behind your vehicle if someone is tailgating you and the only thing you can do is move over, but you can determine space in front of you and on the side.

Make sure you never follow too closely as it can lead to a rear-end collision when you don’t have enough space. To the side of you, it’s vital to ensure you have enough room to merge. Merging lanes with a vehicle too close can cause a crash.

7. Never Drive In Someone Else’s Blind Spots

The blind spot on most vehicles is where a driver cannot see the vehicle in the next lane in their side or rear-view mirrors. As such, it may be necessary for the driver to glance over his or her shoulder to determine if a vehicle is in that spot.

Unfortunately, many drivers don’t check their blind spots, and it can lead to a severe collision.

8. Keep Weather and Road Conditions in Mind

Terrible weather can make it difficult for you to control your vehicle, and it’s even more concerning when others may be driving without the weather conditions in mind. Any time there’s rain, snow, or other potential road conditions that can create a severe hazard, it’s imperative to drive even more carefully.

Make sure you’re never driving too fast for the conditions and keep an eye out for negligent drivers who may be speeding.

9. Always Maintain Your Vehicle as Necessary

Vehicle maintenance is vital, not just for the life of your car or truck, but also to keep you safe on the road. Maintenance such as checking your tire pressure or changing tires, checking brakes, and changing windshield wipers must be done, especially as the weather worsens.

Failure to maintain can be considered a negligent act, and you want to make sure you’re checking your car to avoid a severe crash.

10. Know What to Do If You’re Being Tailgated

It’s unfortunate, but some individuals don’t follow defensive driving techniques, and they’re quick to drive too closely. This is known as tailgating, and if you’re the driver in front, it’s easy to become distracted by the vehicle behind you. If you’re being tailgated, it’s best to move over when safe and go to a slower lane and allow the person to pass you.

At Fieger Law, we know that no matter how safe you try to be on the road, there are still individuals who may drive negligently. In these situations, it’s vital for you to recognize what steps to take to stay safe. If you are injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, though, you must know your rights.

Our Michigan car accident attorneys are ready to stand by your side. We’ll focus on helping you through the complex matters to protect your rights and pursue the compensation you need and deserve. It’s our top priority to put your best interests first, working on your behalf to champion your right to get justice, and more. You can trust that we’ll be there in your corner every step of the way.

For a free consultation to discuss your potential claim, we encourage you to speak with a member of our team. Call us today at (800) 294-6637 and get the answers you need.

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