Tips for Driving Safely in California
Street Smarts: Tips for Driving Safely on California Roadways
California roadways are some of the busiest in the country, with networks of freeways that see thousands of vehicles each day. The state is the nation’s most populous and this, combined with the sheer volume of traffic, causes serious and fatal accidents each day. However, when drivers practice road safety each time they get behind the wheel, they can help to prevent these accidents and keep both themselves and other motorists safe.
What Is Road Safety?
Staying safe on California roads may not seem like a difficult task, but there are many drivers who enter roads and freeways without taking safety into consideration. One of the most effective ways to practice safety behind the wheel is to drive defensively, which includes:
- Avoiding distractions (cell phones, GPS, radio)
- Using the rearview mirror to monitor traffic flow
- Following at a safe distance
- Obeying traffic laws & speed limits
- Using turn signals
Those who practice defensive driving usually operate a motor vehicle with the understanding that the drivers around them may not be as cautious. One important aspect of this kind of watchfulness is to anticipate the acts of other drivers, such as whether they are going to accelerate at a yellow light or make a turn before other cars can pass safely on the other side of the road.
California motorists who follow safety rules and focus on their environment are less likely to cause or become involved in a car accident.
Following and Obeying Road Signs
Road signs are designed to alert drivers to changing traffic conditions, such as when roadways might be slippery from rain or when there is construction work taking place on a road or highway. Drivers who remain aware of the conditions around them can change lanes in plenty of time and follow at safe distances when traffic slows because of construction or foul weather. When the weather causes slippery roads, motorists will need an even greater braking distance to avoid rear-ending other vehicles.
When construction causes traffic slowdowns, rear-end collisions are more likely to occur because drivers may misjudge the flow of stop-and-go traffic. They can prevent this type of accident by leaving at least several car lengths between themselves and the motorist in front of them.
Remaining Aware of Other Drivers
Some accidents occur because drivers fail to notice when other motorists are driving recklessly or are not paying attention to their surroundings. They may be talking to passengers, adjusting their car’s air conditioning or heater or talking on the phone. When two drivers who are not practicing proper road safety meet, the result is likely to have tragic consequences.
Serious accidents may also occur when drivers assume that those around them are driving defensively and looking out for any problems that may cause a crash. This can be a dangerous assumption, especially when traveling at night or when visibility is reduced by rain or fog.
Avoiding Drunk Drivers
Drunk driving claims the lives of more than two dozen people each day in the United States, including children. While spotting a drunk driver is not always simple, there are a few signs motorists can watch for, especially when traveling later at night or on the weekends, when drunk driving incidents are more likely to occur.
Drunk drivers may weave or change lanes often, hesitate at traffic lights or stop signs, and brake or accelerate without warning. Drivers who witness this behavior may want to avoid the driver and notify the authorities, as relaying this kind of road safety information could prevent a serious accident.
Practicing road safety while out on California roads can protect motorists and those around them as well. When accidents do happen, those who are injured may want to reach out to CA Trial Attorneys as soon as possible for further information about their options after an accident.