Did you know that almost 1.3 million people lose their lives each year due to road accidents? It even costs many countries 3% of their gross domestic product! These statistics are devastating when these accidents can be prevented by following road safety instructions. Remember that every time you drive, there are several lives at stake for you to keep safe. Whether you are a new driver or an experienced, you still need to know these four important rules to ensure your safety on the road.
1. Check The Weather
Driving in bad weather conditions is one of the most dangerous things and the main reason behind many car accidents. Checking the weather before driving your car, especially for long distances, can help you prepare your car for any harsh conditions or avoid certain roads. You want to make sure, for example, that your tires have the right air pressure since overinflating ones can lead to loss of rolling friction in cases of rain and wet roads. Fog and other low-visibility conditions also cause many accidents, so checking beforehand will have you prepared to drive slowly and be careful.
2. Avoid Distractions
Being distracted on the road is another main reason behind so many accidents that could’ve been prevented with more attention. The biggest factor that goes into distraction on the road is, of course, driving under the influence, which has already cost too many lives to be lost. The second most deadly distraction is using the phone while driving. In fact, in the US alone, a study showed that texting while driving results in the injury of 330,000 people per year. That’s why the road should be your main concern while you’re driving and if it’s urgent, you can always safely pull over to use the phone.
3. Perform Regular Maintenance
Keeping your car in shape can many unfortunate incidents as well as save you from several dangerous risks. Make sure you perform a yearly inspection on your car so that you identify all problems and fix them to be road-ready. Not only does it ensure your safety, but the personal injury lawyer, Jerome O. Fjeld, believes regular maintenance can absolve you from any legal liability in case of an accident. That way, insurance companies cannot claim that your vehicle had faults that caused an accident, giving you the compensation you deserve. Things like changing your oil every 3000 miles and constantly checking tires and engines can go a long way in keeping you safe on the road.
4. Keep A Safe Distance
Even though one of the main things taught in driving schools is keeping a safe distance, it remains a reason behind a large percentage of car accidents. Whether it’s active driving or stopping at a red light, keeping enough distance between your car and the one in front of you can prevent chances of a rear-end collision with them. It also gives you enough space and time to react if the person in front of you suddenly slams the brakes, as well as prevent you from hitting them if you are hit from behind.
What About Rules For Pedestrians?
1. Safely Crossing The Street
We don’t need to be telling you that you need to look both ways before crossing the street, your mother already probably did that. Most roads have a pedestrian crossing light to help you out with crossing safely. However, even then, drivers may have the green light to turn and won’t know you are about to cross. That’s why you need to make yourself visible to those drivers by giving any kind of signal. Remember to also be aware of those on a motorcycle or bike.
2. Stay Alert
Just like texting and driving is a major cause of accidents, the same goes for texting and walking. Whether you’re on a call, playing a game, or scrolling through social media, it can all wait until you safely reach your destination. You need to stay aware of your surroundings to be able to avoid any tripping hazards, passing runners, or any traffic danger. Make sure you also make yourself visible if you’re walking or crossing the street in the dark to avoid any incidents.
These few rules are extremely important to keep yourself, your vehicle, and other people safe on the road. You should also get acquainted with the specific road safety laws and regulations in your city or town to avoid legal liabilities. Things like looking out for weather conditions before driving and performing a quick inspection before starting your car can go a long way in keeping you safe on the road.