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7 ways to stay safer behind the wheel

7 ways to stay safer behind the wheel7 ways to stay safer behind the wheel

Thousands of people are injured or die on the roads each year, so you must do what you can to protect yourself and your family from injury or harm. The more driving you do, the higher the risk of being hurt or injured, so it should be taken very seriously. Here are 7 ways to stay safer behind the wheel and to drive safely.

7 ways to stay safer behind the wheel

Tire tread safety

Tire treads are designed to help your vehicle grip the road, but over time they get worn down. When this happens, it's time to have your tires replaced with new ones. If you drive with worn treads, particularly in the rain or snow, your vehicle may be more at risk of skidding, and you may lose control of your vehicle. Check your tire treads regularly using the penny method, and have them replaced when necessary. The better your tires grip the road, the less chance there is of an accident happening.

Take regular breaks

This is especially important if you drive long distances. It's easy to become tired when driving, so if at any point you feel sleepy or lethargic, pull over when it's safe to do so and have a break. If there is no safe place to pull over, open a window, or turn down your air conditioning to help make you feel more awake. Switch on the radio and try to remain focussed and alert until you can stop.

Share the journey

If you are traveling with someone else, sharing the journey can help to make it safer. It means you can both have breaks when necessary, or if needs be, have a power nap to make you feel more awake when it's your turn to take the wheel. Having someone to talk to during the journey may also make you feel less lethargic and could help to break the monotony.

Night driving

If you drive at night, then you may be familiar with the glare that can occur from oncoming traffic and you want to drive safely. Night driving glasses have lenses with a yellow tint that darkens the lights of oncoming traffic and street lighting. These yellow tinted glasses work similarly to night vision technology and could make your journey far safer. If you have a spare set of frames you don't use, you could have your lenses replaced with night driving lenses, or you could always buy a new pair. They are handy to keep in your car so you can use them as and when needed.

Vehicle maintenance

One of the easiest ways to stay safe when driving is to make sure that your vehicle is in good working order and is well maintained at all times. To ensure that this happens, an annual service should be carried out. During a car service, all parts of your vehicle will be checked, and anything deemed worn or not working to full capacity will be fixed or replaced. If you don't have your car serviced regularly, you are putting yourself and other road users at risk, so don't take any chances and have works carried out as recommended by your garage. There are simple car maintenance that you can do on your own regularly or as often as it is needed. Car maintenance that you can do yourself includes changing the coolant, changing oil, cleaning your car's headlights, and greasing your car's joints and sockets with the use of a grease gun to protect the components from wearing out.-

Plan your route

Many accidents occur when the driver has no idea of their route. It's easy to take a wrong turn and panic or go the wrong way down a one-way street. By familiarizing yourself with the route, you will reduce the risk of an accident taking place. If your vehicle doesn't have a GPS, use your mobile phone. There are lots of free and cheap apps that will give you detailed routes and map guidance, which can help to make your journey safer. Many will also tell you the quickest and easiest routes, which can help to reduce your overall journey time.

Don’t use mobile phones

Texting while driving is extremely dangerous, so if it's something that you have been known to do in the past, you should stop. In many states, it's illegal, and given the number of fatalities caused by using a mobile phone when driving, it is no wonder. Taking your eyes off the road for a few seconds is ample time to lose control or collide with another vehicle, so as tempting as it may be, refrain from using your phone whilst in motion. If you urgently need to use your phone, pull over when safe to do so and then make your call or send your text. It could save your life and the life of others, so be sensible and don't take any chances.

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