Can you remember back when you first started driving? You had to learn the rules of the road and abide by them obediently to even receive your license. Once you perfected your driving skills to pass the test, you received your license. You were free as a bird from flying the nest. No more riding the bus, or relying on others when you wanted to go somewhere. The freedom of taking yourself where you wanted, when you wanted, was liberating.
What happens to us as we get more and more used to driving? We start to think we are experts, in control of the car at all times. We lose track of the important rules of the road that keep us safe. Let’s recap on these valuable rules of the road that should be taken into account every time we drive.
These are a few of the laws that are most commonly broken while driving.
1. Speed limits. Speeding is dangerous for everyone. The limits set on the road are there for a reason. Learn more about this here.
2. Turn signals. Communication is key in any relationship; including the relationship between you and fellow drivers. Turn signals bridge the gap of communication between you and the other drivers on the road. Don’t forget about the importance of telling other drivers which direction you are headed.
3. Distracted driving. Like a dog who has just noticed a squirrel, we are guilty of getting easily distracted at times. As soon as something catches our eye, we tend the avert our attention from the road. A text message or phone call, something falling on the floorboard of our vehicle, the craving of a snack we have in the passenger seat. Whatever the distraction may be, remember the popular term “It can wait.”
4. Following too closely. Back in the day, the rule was “one car length per every 10 MPH,” the more common rule now, however, is “at least two seconds behind the car in front of you.” Watch for the car in front of you to pass a sign beside the road. Count to two slowly, and THEN you should pass that same sign. Following too closely is a form of aggressive driving. If the person in front of you brakes suddenly, being too close can cause an accident that could have otherwise been avoided.
5. Not wearing a seatbelt. “Click it or ticket.” Wearing a seatbelt is the law, and for a very good reason. National Highway Traffic Safety Association states that 15,000 lives are saved by seat belts every year.
Next time you drive, pretend it’s your first time again. Go back to driving the way you did when there was someone grading your driving skills sitting in your passenger seat. As you drive this way, you can see how many laws you are forgetting to follow on a daily basis. Get back in the habit of safe driving.