Car accidents are one of the leading causes of death for people below the age of 35 in this country.
This is despite decades of public information campaigns on road safety and the fact that today’s cars have built-in technologies to keep us safe on (presumably) safer roads.
Improvements in technology continue to help reduce these losses, but the bottom line remains that most car accidents are the result of human error. Therefore the best way to reduce the risk of being involved in an accident is to practice safe driving behaviours.
Whether you're just learning to drive or you've been behind the wheel for decades, it's a good idea to review some basic tips for safe driving. Here are 9 road safety tips that will help bring you and your passengers home unharmed.
1. Avoid distractions to your driving
Handling a phone, side talks with your passenger or not generally keeping your eyes on the road can distract your attention from driving and could lead to an accident. A distracted driver may fail to identify hazards along the way and would miss or ignore the clues that would have helped navigation.
2. Pay attention to your car
Ensuring that your vehicle is serviced regularly (in line with the manufacturer's recommendations) will help to avoid breakdowns and accidents caused by vehicle faults. Hearing creaky sounds or poor engine starts can be an indicator that your car is due for maintenance and can spare you that “had I known” moment.
3. Don't drive if you’re unfit
Driving ill or drunk is a danger to yourself and other road users. Any alcohol, even a small amount, can impair your senses and inevitably your driving. Also, any form of narcotics can be a danger to your driving and your health generally, so play it safe and don’t drive under the influence of any stimulant. If you’re too old to drive, think carefully if you’re fit before taking the wheel.
4. Obey traffic laws and speed limits
Traffic laws, road signs and speed limits are there to keep you safe and aware of the road you’re driving on. The risk of fatality in your car is dependent on collision speed – a rear end shunt on the motorway is unlikely to be serious if the collision speed is low, but hitting a child, a pedal cyclist or a motorcyclist even below the urban speed limit can be fatal for them.
5. Mind the pedestrians
Watch out for pedestrians plying the side of the road on foot or bicycles and even those crossing the roads, especially children as they often act impulsively. Take extra care around schools, roadside kiosks and anywhere they might gather.
6. Anticipate other road users
You’re not the only one road user on a drive. Observe and anticipate other road users and use your mirrors regularly. There’s also your surroundings to pay attention to. Many road mishaps have occurred because of some unwanted item falling into the way or gaps on the road that have gone unchecked.
7. Secure your passengers
Ensure your passengers are well belted and locked in. An unbelted passenger can get hurt or seriously injure the driver or other passengers in a collision. Also, use child and baby seats for children, which should be fitted properly and checked every trip.
8. Take a break or share the load
Tiredness is thought to be a major factor in more than 10% of road accidents. Plan to stop for at least a 15-minute break every 2 hours on a long journey or share your driving responsibilities with someone else (who’s also a mindful driver). This will help lighten the load of long driving and save you time.
9. Get insurance for eventualities
It’s always important to have a proper comprehensive insurance policy. It will provide you with funds to replace your car, pay for medical expenses so you can be back on the road as soon as possible. It’s better to be safe than sorry; and having insurance saves you worries.
This article is provided by compareinsurance.com.ng, the online insurance portal for buying insurance from Nigeria’s most serious insurers in 3 simple steps…
Kindly visit our website on www.compareinsurance.com.ng or call Sola on 09090004273 to get more information and help today.
This is a feature by Compare Insurance.