When it comes to driving, we all know that it’s both an exciting and dangerous activity. We rely on our cars to get us where we need to go, but the reality is that there are a lot of things that can go wrong while we’re behind the wheel. That’s why it’s important to be aware of the dangers and take precautions while driving.
Here are some of the important tips from the experts on how to stay safe while driving in Atlanta.
Always Wear Your Seatbelt
This should be a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many people still don’t wear their seatbelts while driving. Wearing a seatbelt is one of the simplest and most effective ways to stay safe while driving. In fact, it’s estimated that seatbelts save over 11,000 lives every year in the United States.
Additionally, if you’re involved in an accident, wearing a seatbelt will help to minimize the severity of your injuries. Let’s say you’re involved in a head-on collision while not wearing a seatbelt and you fly through the windshield. The injuries you sustain from hitting the pavement will be much more severe than if you had been wearing a seatbelt and stayed inside the car.
There are a lot of excuses people give for not wearing a seatbelt, but none of them are good enough. If you’re caught driving without a seatbelt in Atlanta, you can be fined up to $50. So, there’s really no excuse not to buckle up.
Obey the Speed Limit
Speeding is one of the most common causes of accidents. This is especially true where the traffic can be heavy and the roads are often congested. Additionally, speeding makes it more difficult to control your car and can reduce your reaction time if something unexpected happens.
When you’re driving in Atlanta, it’s important to obey the posted speed limit and to use extra caution when driving in areas where the speed limit is lower than normal. However, if you happen to be involved in an accident, the Atlanta based auto accident lawyer always stresses that you should never admit fault at the scene and that, in these cases, legal representatives are your best bet as they know the ins and outs of the law. Make sure you have the right coverage in case the worst happens.
Keep a Safe Distance From Other Cars
Tailgating is one of the most dangerous driving habits and it’s also one of the leading causes of accidents. When you tailgate, you put yourself and others at risk. If the car in front of you stops suddenly, you could rear-end them, causing serious damage and possibly injuring yourself or your passengers.
To avoid this, make sure to leave plenty of space between your car and the one in front of you. The general rule is to leave at least two seconds of space for every 10 mph that you’re traveling. So, if you’re going 30 mph, you should leave six seconds between you and the car in front of you.
Also, have in mind that stopping distances are longer in adverse weather conditions, so give yourself even more space if the roads are slippery.
Use Your Turn Signals
Using your turn signals is one of the most basic and important things you can do to be a safe driver. Turn signals let other drivers know what you’re planning to do so that they can adjust their speed and position accordingly. There is also a legal requirement in most states to use your turn signals when changing lanes or making a turn.
Not using your turn signals is one of the most common driving mistakes and it can easily result in an accident. So, make sure to use them every time you need to change lanes or turn. You should also make sure that your turn signals are working properly and that they’re visible to other drivers.
Don’t Drive While Distracted
Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of accidents, especially among young drivers. Driving while distracted can include anything from talking on the phone to eating and drinking, or even changing the radio station. Texting is perhaps the most dangerous form of distracted driving as it takes your eyes off the road and your hands off the wheel.
If you must use your phone while driving, pull over to a safe location first. And if you’re feeling tired, stop driving and take a break. It’s better to arrive late than not at all.
Smart technology in cars these days offers a lot of features that can help make driving easier and safer. However, you should never use these features while driving as they can still be distracting. For example, many newer cars have touchscreen displays that allow you to control the music and navigation. But, if you take your eyes off the road to use them, it could also result in an accident.
Obey Traffic Lights and Signs
Traffic lights and signs are there for a reason – to keep traffic flowing smoothly and to help prevent accidents. So, you must obey them at all times.
Running a red light or stop sign is one of the most common causes of accidents. And, in many states, it’s also illegal. So, if you see a red light or stop sign, make sure to slow down and come to a complete stop before proceeding.
Also, be aware of any changing traffic patterns in the area. For example, construction zones often have reduced speed limits and different traffic patterns. Or, a school zone might have different hours when the speed limit is reduced. So, make sure to pay attention to all traffic signs and signals in the area.
Watch Out for Pedestrians
Accidents involving pedestrians are all too common, especially in urban areas. And, in many cases, they’re also preventable.
As a driver, you should always be on the lookout for pedestrians, especially when turning or entering a crosswalk. And, when you see a pedestrian, make sure to yield the right-of-way. In most states, Atlanta too, pedestrians have the right-of-way at crosswalks, and drivers are required to yield.
Also, be extra cautious when driving in areas where pedestrians are more likely to be present, such as near schools or parks. And, always remember to use extra caution when driving at night as pedestrians are more difficult to see.
To drive safely, you need to follow these tips from the experts. Use your turn signals, don’t drive while distracted, obey traffic lights and signs, and watch out for pedestrians. There are also other things to be aware of, such as construction zones and school zones.
By following these tips, you can help prevent accidents and keep yourself and others safe.