Drive Defensively

No, I’m not saying that you have to have a bad attitude every time that you drive - you just need to drive defensively. There are approximately 6,000,000 (million) collisions that happen on America’s roads every year. These accidents aren’t caused because of Seat Belt failure or something, they’re caused because people don’t really look out the way that they’re supposed to.

These accidents kill an approximate 40,000 Americans and injure 2 million more annually. Not to mention they cost the government about $164 billion every year; this means about $1,000 per person. Here are a few tips that you can use if you plan to drive defensively:

1. Stay focused no matter what - I know we all have trouble ignoring that text message alert or that phone ring, but it’s what we all have to do. If you’re like me & you run late almost all the time, you probably finish your breakfast in your car & put on your lipstick while you’re in your car - Don’t Do This! There was a study done in 2006 that stated most accidents are caused because there is some kind of distraction involved.

When you’re driving, that’s all that you should be doing: driving.

2. Be in control - If you take a controlled substance (which hopefully you don’t) it will definitely slow down your reflexes and will also impair your judgment enough for you to get into an accident. Another thing that you should worry about is sleepiness; when you drive drowsy, this is equivalent to getting in your car and driving pretty drunk. I am not even kidding. Because of sleepiness, there are 2 million crashes every year.

3. Be cautious and know where you’re going - Even though you’re probably the best driver that ever lived, you still need to worry about the other drivers. My mom tells me this all the time, “I trust you, I just don’t trust them and how they drive”. When you drive, you should keep some extra space between your car and the car that’s in front of you. This is done to give other drivers enough room to make unexpected moves .. even though unexpected movies are no fun at all.

The mirrors that you have on your car are there for a reason, check them constantly. Try to look as far as you can down the road that you’re driving on. No matter what, try to always have an escape route open just in case someone sneaks up on you.

4. No matter what, be safe - Driving safe means making sure that your car has a properly working Seat Belt for all passengers, having a working Air Bag, and also making sure that your Brakes work. You should check your tire pressure, lights and fluids before you hit the road - especially before a long trip that you’re planning to take.

When you’re driving, be sure that you lock all of your doors, wear your Seat Belt at all times, and make sure that your passengers wear theirs, too. You should also always drive the speed limit and make sure that you’re obeying all of the traffic laws that are set our for you.

The most important thing that you need if you want to drive defensively is common sense - that’s actually the main ingredient. If you think that you really need that extra push, then there’s different defensive driving classes that you can take.