Defensive Driving Habits

By Mark T. Flickinger, JD on July 09, 2019

Defensive Driving HabitsDriving is a dangerous undertaking no matter where you drive. You’re more likely to get injured or killed driving than you are to die in a plane crash, terrorist incident, or other major crime. We’re not here to scare you, but we do want to impress upon you the severity of driving on the roads and the need to learn some defensive driving skills. 

Our injury lawyers at Flickinger, Sutterfield, and Boulton have represented case after case of drivers incurring injuries on the roads, and while you can’t always control others and their poor driving habits, you can develop defensive driving habits that can keep you safer on the roads, no matter how bad other drivers may be. Begin by introducing one or two of these habits every single time you drive, and then add habits as you master the defensive driving skills. Soon you’ll be a defensive driver who can travel with confidence. 

Defensive Driving Habits

  • Slow Down. A defensive driver knows that high rates of speed spell higher rates of danger and injury. Speed increases impact, as well as decreasing reaction time, so going slower will help you respond defensively and minimize impact force in the event of a collision. 

  • Buckle Up. Have a zero tolerance policy for riding unbuckled. Ensure the safety of everyone in your car by insisting on seatbelts every single time, no matter how short the ride or how grown the passenger. 

  • Shine. Create a habit of turning on your lights even during daylight hours. The added visibility that headlights give you can help others see you more clearly, and prevent issues during twilight hours when most crashes occur. 

  • Avoid Distractions. Practice putting your phone in the backseat, and setting your music before you drive. Keeping your hands on the wheel and minimal-to-no distractions can make a huge difference in your ability to notice and respond to bad drivers and dangerous situations on the road. 

  • Scan. Good defensive drivers know that they can prevent accidents through vigilant observation. Constantly scan the surroundings, including the cars around you, upcoming traffic signs, pedestrians, and any other hazards that could cause you to brake suddenly or encounter a car or other object in your roadway. 

  • Predict. Start noticing where you see bad or dangerous driving. By identifying where you’re likely to encounter a bad driver, you can drive preventatively to keep yourself safe. For example, you may notice that bad drivers don’t stay in their lane when going through a multi-lane intersection turn. You can provide extra space and allow that car to pass through the intersection ahead of you in the event that they swing into your lane illegally. 

We hope that defensive driving keeps you safe, but if you do find yourself the victim of a car crash you should seek the help of Flickinger, Sutterfield, and Boulton to represent your case and maximize your insurance payout and compensation for pain, suffering, and damages. We can help you along the road to healing and restitution starting with just one phone call. 

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