Driving has become a mundane task. In today’s busy world, focused, alert driving can often take a backseat to safe driving habits. It becomes easier and easier to forget how much concentration it takes to drive safely, and it becomes more and more tempting to make compromises.
Here are several dangerous driving habits that I ask all drivers to read through:
1. Driving under the Influence
One of the obvious ones. Driving under the influence is the number one cause of traffic fatalities. Driving drunk reduces reaction time, impairs judgement. Instead, take a taxi or a bus, or call a friend for a ride.
2. Distracted Driving
Driving while on the phone or texting is another leading cause of traffic fatalities. Sending a text, making a call, even eating a sandwich requires you to take your eyes off the road for several seconds or more. At high speeds, cars move over 100 feet per second. A lot can change in 2 or 3 seconds.
3. Drafting off of Semi-trucks
It seems like a great idea. Following closely behind semi-trucks improves your gas mileage by taking advantage of the low-pressure zone that a large vehicle creates. However, this behavior is also dangerous. Following this close behind a Semi gives you very little time to react, should the truck need to stop suddenly. Additionally, it impairs your visibility; the truck driver can see what’s coming, but you can’t.
4. Driving Tired
Driving Tired can be just as dangerous as driving drunk. Tired drivers have slower reaction times and are likely to fall asleep behind the wheel. If you feel yourself nodding off, pull over and take a short nap. Even 10 minutes of sleep can improve brain function and help you reach your destination safely.
5. Reckless Driving
Speeding, failure to give right of way, not slowing down in inclement weather conditions and other behaviors all fall under Reckless driving. Driving too quickly is another of the leading causes of accidents in the United States. The IIHS points out that the likelihood of a crash increases when a driver goes above the speed limit. Failure to give right of way includes running stop signs or red lights, failing to yield when merging onto the highway and others. These behaviors cause unpredictability, which can lead to accidents. Rain and Snow can make the road slippery and speeding can drastically increase the chances of a crash, should you need to stop suddenly. Other behaviors include: swerving, weaving, accelerating and braking suddenly and others.
6. Not Wearing a Seat belt
Seat belts are there for a reason. Windshields are very strong. They are designed to take impacts from pieces of debris traveling at speeds of 60 miles per hour or more, without shattering. In the event of an accident, failure to wear a seat belt could send you face-first into the airbag, or the windshield. Additionally, airbags are designed to work in conjunction with seat belts to save lives and minimize injury.
The average number of national car accident fatalities in the United States per year is 37,000.
It’s tough to delay your arrival by pulling over for a nap, and it’s tempting to draft off of a semi-truck to save money on gas, but these habits (like many others) are incredibly dangerous. It’s always important to remember that cars are large objects traveling at high speeds.
When dealing with something as potentially dangerous as a car, you should always use common sense and an abundance of caution so as not to make a dangerous mistake.
If you or a family member was injured in a motor vehicle accident by no fault of your own, call me today for your free consultation. As your Ohio car accident attorney, I’ll be there for you, and I will Make Them Pay!®
Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injury, medical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving “Cleveland, Akron/Canton, Columbus, Dayton and neighboring communities.” You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 1 (800) 556-4769.