On average, there are more than six million auto accidents on U.S. roads every year. Sadly, tens of thousands of these crashes prove to be fatal every year. To some, it may seem inevitable to suffer from an auto accident at some point. Fortunately, there are many precautions to help reduce your risk of having an accident. Before your Valparaiso Car Insurance is up for renewal, try to be sure you're following this advice.
Aside from the common tips to remain safe are to wear seatbelts, drive defensively, follow driving laws closely and be considerate to other drivers on the road, there are a few more to consider.
Keep your eyes on the road
When you're behind the wheel, it's extremely important to stay focused on the road at all times. Driving distractions cause thousands of accidents every day. So don’t take your eyes off the road, whether you're changing radio stations or dialing a number on your cell phone.
Safety experts say you should avoid doing any of the following while driving:
- Picking up a dropped item
- Changing the music selection
- Setting at a GPS or looking at a map
- Eating or drinking
- Dialing a number, talking on the phone, or sending a text message
- Reading a newspaper, or anything of the sort
- Applying makeup, combing or brushing your hair, or any other form of personal grooming
Lastly, follow these 10 safety tips to reduce your risk of an auto accident:
- Never drive after consuming alcohol.
- Don't give in to such distractions as playing with your iPod, reading a text message or picking up something your child dropped in the backseat.
- Avoid road rage. If you come across an aggressive driver, don't antagonize or encourage them. Keep your cool and call the police if the driver is putting other motorists at risk.
- Keep a safe distance between your car and the vehicle in front of you. For every 10 miles per hour of your driving speed, leave at least one car length between your car and the car in front of you.
- Try to maintain a consistent speed. Don't continually slow down and speed up unless the posted speed limit changes.
- Keep your car in tip-top shape. Get regular oil changes and tune ups and check the condition of your tires at least once a month.
- Stay alert when you drive through intersections. Most accidents occur in intersections, so be sure to look left, then right, then left again to make sure it is safe to pass through.
- Keep your side mirrors and rear-view mirrors adjusted properly. As you drive, check your side and rearview mirrors every 15 seconds to make sure you're in the clear.
- Be aware of road conditions and react appropriately. For example, turn on your lights if you're driving at dusk or dawn or in the rain. If the roads are wet, snowy or icy and you feel your car starting to hydroplane, don't brake suddenly or turn the steering wheel. This could send you into a skid. Instead, ease off the gas pedal slowly and steer straight until you feel your tires regain traction.
- Sign up for a defensive driving class. With the proper training, you'll be able to react more quickly to potential accidents on the road.