6 Tips for Being a Good Driver
Are you learning to drive for the very first time? Or maybe you've gotten a few tickets and are looking to avoid more. If you're ready to ensure your safety on the road, here are just six tips for smoother commutes.
- Remain Vigilant
It might sound simple, but this is the best driving advice that you'll ever receive: Don't get distracted while you're behind the wheel! Don't text or make phone calls. Don't look away from the road to juggle your coffee or put an address into your GPS. Don't yell at a bad driver with your head hanging out of the window. Not only will situational awareness keep you safe, but it might also save the life of a cyclist or pedestrian.
- Know Your Blind Spots
Speaking of pedestrians, they're going to be everywhere while you drive, so you'll want to know all of your blind spots in advance. Is there a missing space in your peripheral vision when you're backing out of a parking lot? Does your neck hurt when you try to crane it in a certain direction? Do your mirrors need to be adjusted after someone else drives your car? These are all important things to know before you put yourself on the road.
- Take Driver's Ed
While driving classes aren't <i>necessary</i> to become a good driver, they can be extremely helpful. Not only they will ensure that you know all of your local laws, but they'll also stop you from picking up bad habits from your Aunt Sally as she teaches you. Taking a state-approved course might even lower your auto insurance premiums!
- Know Your Limits
You've probably heard about the dangers of driving drunk, but did you know that it's just as dangerous to drive when you're sleepy? You'll also be impaired when you're sick, tired, stressed or taking certain medications. While you can't always avoid the necessity of driving when you're unwell, recognizing these risk factors can go a long ways towards preventing accidents. For example, if you're aware that your head cold will impact your focus, you can turn on your rear view assistance cameras.
- Practice Driving in Tough Conditions
You never know when a blizzard will dump six inches of snow on the ground, and if you've never driven in cold, icy conditions before, your morning commute could get quite hazardous. The same goes for driving in the rain or driving at night. You won't feel comfortable operating your vehicle in these conditions until you have some practice under your belt, so make it a point to take the car out at sub-optimal times. Don't just practice on smooth roads during sunny days.
- Understand the System
If you don't want to get a traffic ticket Calgary, make sure that you understand how to avoid them. Speeding isn't the only crime that you can commit on the road! For example, unsafe lane changes will get you two demerit points on your driving record, and failing to stop for a school bus will get you six. A good driving record is essential for low auto insurance rates, so do your best to stay squeaky clean.
These are just a few ways to be a safe, responsible driver. At the end of the day, driving is a skill like anything else, and it requires dedication to become truly proficient. Good luck!