Four Important Defensive Driving Tips

Roads in the USA have never been so busier the way they are today. With increasing disposable income in the country, more and more people are investing in their personal vehicles and relying less on public transportation. This automatically makes driving on congested roads a big challenge and calls for the learning of defensive driving skills, especially for first-time drivers.

Defensive driving simply means to drive in a way that you are able to defend yourself against possible collisions and prevent the chances of accidents. Equipping oneself with defensive driving skills helps in identifying potential hazards on the road and acting immediately. Such adeptness not only gets you to the destination safely but also save you hundreds of dollars on auto insurance.

When you are on the road, you can never make assumptions about other drivers’ intentions or anticipate what they might do next. So, instead of getting tensed up and waiting for an accident to happen, implement the following techniques and be ready every time to defend yourself:

  1. Keep Yourself Calm

Almost every one of us is guilty of driving wrong at one time or another because of an unstable state of mind. What we feel inside is how we react to others on the road. That is why an attitudinal change is required, particularly when driving to work. Focus on being in a perfect frame of mind before you step with your vehicle on the road and be completely relaxed when you arrive at the office.

2. Pay Attention to the Road Rules

This may sound like a no brainer but a lot of drivers actually don’t care about the road signs, the speed limit, and the traffic signals. They either end up driving rashly or go the wrong way on one-way streets. They forget that whatever they would do would affect the driver who is ahead and behind and can cause an accident really quickly. Thus, make sure you obey all the traffic rules and lights and stay within your prescribed speed limit.

3. Plan Ahead for the Unexpected

When you drive, you cannot control people’s actions but can surely make a plan to keep yourself safe and act immediately for the safety of others. When you learn defensive driving, you develop a keen eye to scan the road ahead and look beyond the foreground. This allows you to be well-prepared for what is to come and give you ample time to react.

4. Learn to Drive on Special Roads and in all Weather Conditions

Weather is a major culprit in most motor vehicle accidents in the USA. The weather conditions change pretty soon and unless you are a defensive driver, you cannot adapt to them. So, it is best to undergo an advanced driving course if you wish to drive on special highways and in bad weather conditions or during the night.

Four Signs When Older Drivers Should Stop Driving

When it was your childhood, your parents looked after you. They gave you everything you needed for a good life – food, shelter, care, and love. But as the years pass by, the responsibility gets swapped. Your elderly parents become dependable on you and their deteriorating health becomes a point of concern.

With time, seniors encounter degenerated vision and slow reflexes that highly impact their driving ability. Driving is no longer safe for them, especially for the ones having age-related health conditions such as dementia. That is why it becomes essential for you to regularly monitor their driving abilities.

An important point to note is that all drivers are different and the time to stop driving for each one of them may be different. There are many senior drivers who can put the younger drivers to shame with their quality of driving and there are many others who are victimized by severe health ailments and are forced to leave driving at their early age.

So, look out for the following signs before you prevent your older family to get behind the wheel:

  1. Hearing or Sight Loss

Getting older doesn’t automatically mean that your elderly parent should stop driving. However, if you see them struggling with road sign reading or ignoring the honks of vehicles behind, it is an alarming situation. They may persist on getting hearing and visual aids but there comes a time when such aids can do very little in mitigating the potential risks while driving on the road. Explaining them the scope of damage that can happen is the only way out.

2. Dull or Slow Reactions

If you see your parents or senior family members running the red lights and the stop signs or failing to brake when an animal comes out suddenly on the road, it is a warning sign. It could be a child next time. Hence, you have to help them understand that they need to give up on their driving, not as a punishment but for their and others’ safety. 

3. Reduced Concentration

It is normal for the seniors to start forgetting and abandoning their minor tasks, but what if the same happens in the case of driving? Well, there can be disastrous consequences. Elderly people tend to get easily distracted by a conversation, changing of radio channels, or adjusting the temperature controls of the car. So, such tasks should be delegated to the person sitting by and let them focus on the road entirely. If these precautionary measures don’t help, it is strongly recommended by driving experts to ask the seniors to stop driving.

4. Dented or Damaged Car

Those minor dents on the car bonnet, cracks on the wing mirrors and broken tail lights are the outcomes of small crashes that your parents may not be even noticing. Older people face a hard time getting in and out of the parking space and often bump into the vehicles behind them. This may lead to a more serious accident in the future. Thus, ask them to be more careful next time or simply get over driving.

Tips To Pass The Road Test

Getting a driving license is an important milestone in the lives of most of the people. They look forward to it with the feeling of anticipation, excitement, and anxiety. It is because they are not guaranteed that they will pass the driving test. However, there are some ways that can increase the chances of success. 

Are you also planning to give the driving test in the near future? If yes, then this article is for you. Here we have jotted some useful tips on how to pass the road test. 

1. Practice, Practice and Practice – Just like any other skill, it takes time to gain expertise in driving. And the only way to become a good driver is to get plenty of practice. There are a few things that you can learn only while driving and not just be reading. So, it is crucial to practice as much as you can before the day of the driving test. You can even take driving classes from a good driving school in your area. 

2. Prepare and adapt to anything – Whether it is an upcoming ambulance or weather conditions, you have to be mentally prepared to adapt and adjust to the situation. Preparing beforehand for such cases will prevent you from panicking on the day of road test if it arises. The best way out is to practice driving in different weather condition. 

3. Pay attention to driving – It is easy to get distracted by the actions of the evaluator. You may try to have a sneak peek at what they are writing down or judge their facial expressions. But it is not at all a good idea. If you want to walk out without any disappointment, then focus on the road. Also, notice what is happening around you to drive carefully. This way examiner will definitely write good positive things about you. 

4. Don’t get tensed – Staying relaxed is crucial if you want to drive well. Have a clear mind and an awareness of what’s going on around you and hold the ability to react to anything. You can think clearly and respond smartly only if you are stress-free.  

5. Don’t forget the basics – Nervousness will not let you give the best of your performance. Also, while trying to remember the smallest details, you may overlook the essential things. So, stay calm and give your best. Don’t let anxiety overrule you. This way, your chances of passing the road test will increase to a great extent. 

6. Don’t make a rush to reach there – Leave yourself ample time before your scheduled test, so that you can arrive and get familiarised with the area. If you reach there on time, then your stress will add up and may get in panic mode even before your test. So, arrive at the location of the test before time to avoid unnecessary pressure and fear. 

7. Don’t be afraid to ask questions – Though you know you are there to give the driving test, but that does not mean that you can’t ask the question for clarification if an instruction is not clear to you. Make sure that each and every instruction is clear to you if you want to pass your road test. 

Top 8 Safe Driving Tips for Older Drivers

Top 8 Safe Driving Tips for Older Drivers

As we age our driving abilities change. Young drivers drive fearlessly and even take
unnecessary risks by ignoring driving etiquettes. But as we become aged, we had to follow the rules and drive conservatively.

Because of the physical changes, older people find it difficult to turn the head to look for
approaching traffic. Factors such as medication, hearing impairment, vision concerns make driving even more challenging as the age increases. So, it becomes imperative to take care of driving habits in older age.

Are you also a senior person and looking for some good tips to stay safe while driving? Then consider the following tips by our driving experts.

Stay active – Staying physically active helps improving flexibility and strength of the
body. Indulging in some physical activity improves your health, and thus it becomes
easier for you to turn the steering and make other body movements while driving.
Stretching, walking, yoga and strength training are helpful for older drivers to stay fit.
However, if you have any health-related issue, then get your doctor’s confirmation
before performing any activity.

  1. Stay active – Staying physically active helps improving flexibility and strength of the body. Indulging in some physical activity improves your health, and thus it becomes easier for you to turn the steering and make other body movements while driving. Stretching, walking, yoga and strength training are helpful for older drivers to stay fit. However, if you have any health-related issue, then get your doctor’s confirmation before performing any activity. 
  1. Schedule regular vision and hearing tests – As we age, the functioning of our body system begin to decline. Vision problem such as cataract makes it difficult to see clearly. It then becomes difficult for older adults to drive at night. Further, impaired hearing reduces your ability to hear the horn of oncoming vehicles. So, it is advised to have regular check-ups and stick to the doctor’s recommendation. 
  1. Check if your medication has any side effects – If you are on medication to heal any health issue, then make sure to read the side effects of the medicine on its label. If it says that you should not operate heavy machines after taking medicine, then don’t even drive as the car is also heavy machinery. Also, if you are unsure about the side effects of any prescription, then consult your doctor before operating your car. It is highly suggested not to drive if your medicine causes dizziness. 
  1. Always use your seat belts – Never ever forget to buckle up before driving the car. If you feel uncomfortable with your seat belt, then adjust it as per your comfort level or buy a shoulder pad. 
  1. Avoid driving in bad weather conditions – Driving in snow, rain and fog can be dangerous for aged drivers. Get on the road only after the weather is clear and safe for driving. However, if you have to travel urgently, then consider using public transportation. 
  1. Drive only when you are in a good mood and roads are in good condition – To stay safe on the road, it is advised to drive during daytime and on quiet and familiar roads. Moreover, make sure that you are in a good mood and are not asngry or tired.

 Also, considering your age factor, it is advised never to drive after having alcohol. 

  1. Don’t eat while driving – Eating can distract you when driving. If you are hungry and want to have something, then park your car in a safe area first. 
  1. Refresh your driving skills – Experts recommend taking driving classes that are specialised for older people. It will help you stay on the top of the current rules of the road. 

Helpful Tips To Drive Safely in Snow Fall

In extreme winters, snowy weather conditions can make driving a real challenge for drivers and ca even lead to accidents. Winter storms, bad weather and poor road conditions are the reasons for road accidents and more than 2,000 road deaths every winter.

So, to embark your journey in the snow, it is extremely crucial to prepare yourself adequately. To help you drive safely in the snow, we are here with this worth reading article. Make sure to go through each and every tip to keep yourself and your co-passengers safe while driving. 

1. Keep your driving extremely smooth – The first and the most important tip for safe driving in snow is to stay smooth with the steering wheel, brakes and accelerator. It is because jerky moves with the controls easily unstick tires that have a slight grip on the icy road, so every push of the brakes and turn of the wheel, has to be careful and gentle. 

2. Prepare your car for winters – Make sure that your vehicle is up to date with fuel, fluids and brakes. Experts suggest keeping your fuel tank half full during winters. Also, don’t forget to top off all the essential fluids in your car before heading out on the road in snowy weather. 

3. Accelerate and decelerate slowly – Pressing your foot down on the brake or the gas while driving in snow can make your car to lose traction. You may even lose your control over the car. So, to avoid a skid, accelerate and decelerate slowly. Keep calm and cautiously accelerate, or brake slowly to prevent accidents while on the road. Moreover, don’t move in a hurry and take time to slow down for a stoplight. Remember, it takes a longer time to slow down on icy roads.

4. Always wear a seatbelt – Whatever the weather condition is, never forget to wear a seatbelt. It is there for a reason, and you should use it. Wearing a seatbelt can save your life in case of an accident. 

5. Check your tiers – No one wants to get stuck in the middle of the road with a flat tire, especially when it is snow outside. Moreover, a flat tire can skid easily on wet roads. So, make sure that your tires are properly inflated. Also, get it frequently checked as the pressure of tires fluctuate with temperature. 

6. Slow down when the snow starts to accumulate – You may be expert at driving, but when the snow begins to gather on the road, it is extremely advised to slow down. You never know if there is a patch of black ice ahead. 

7. Keep distance – Generally, driving experts advise to maintain a distance of three to four seconds with the vehicle in front of you. However, in winters, particularly in snowy days, it should be increased to six to eight seconds. Again, slowing down can help in keeping you and your car safe while driving on or in snow.

8. Stay alert and focused – Just because you are expert at driving, don’t take it lightly in snow. Such over-confidence can prove to be your biggest mistake. When on the road, pay attention to your surroundings and don’t make phone calls or listen to the radio. 

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