When you’re driving an automobile, whether you’re alone or with passengers, safety should be your number one priority. Not only do you have your own safety to consider, but the safety of your passengers, other motorists and their passengers, bicyclists, motorcyclists, and pedestrians.
With advancements in smartphone technology, today’s drivers are more distracted than ever. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), distracted driving claimed the lives of 3,166 people in 2017 alone. To help keep our roads safe, avoid engaging in distracted driving activities and encourage others to do the same.
Before the Trip
- Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Make sure the mirrors and seats are properly adjusted before you hit the road.
- Always check the gas tank before taking a trip.
Avoid Distracted Driving
- Never text while driving.
- If you get a call, pull over to the side of the road or wait until after your trip to call the person back.
- To stay safe, don’t pick up your phone to read texts.
- Keep your focus 100% on driving by keeping your eyes on the road, your hands on the wheel, and your mind on the primary task of driving.
- If you need to eat, pull over on the side of the road.
Stay Safe with Kids in the Car
- Never let children ride in the car unless they are buckled up. Have a zero-tolerance policy for children not wearing seat belts. Make sure kids buckle up every time!
- Do not allow children to fight in the back. This distracts the driver and can cause an accident.
- Do not bend or lean over while driving to pick up a toy or sippy cup. Instead, pull over.
Avoid Drowsy Driving
- Drowsy driving is dangerous and can cause fatal accidents, so don’t drive without sufficient rest.
- Do not drive through the night as this increases the risk of a crash.
- On long road trips, pull over every two hours to rest and stretch your legs.
- Do not drive under the influence of sedating medications, such as muscle relaxants, sleeping pills, and antihistamines.
- If you’re on a road trip and you get tired, pull over to a well-lit place to take a nap and hit the road after you’ve had some rest.
- You can be the best driver in the world, but that can’t entirely prevent you from being in a crash with a distracted driver. To stay safe, be aware of your surroundings at all times and drive defensively.
- Be on the lookout for distracted drivers, especially people who are looking at their phones while behind the wheel.
- Always look for motorcyclists, bicyclists, and children who could dart into the road.
At Jones & Swanson, we care about your family’s safety and best interests throughout the personal injury claims process. If you need to file a claim for compensation, we invite you to contact our firm for a free case evaluation.