If you’re an inexperienced driver, being on the road may make you anxious. Learning and practicing safe driving tips can boost your confidence, help you stay safe and lead to lower auto insurance premiums. Here’s a 30-day safe driving challenge guide:
Week One: Safety First
In the first week of the 30-day challenge, your focus will be on safety. Here are habits you should start:
1. Before starting the car, buckle your seat belt. Make sure all passengers are buckled.
2. Do not drive if you’re tired. If you feel drowsy on the road, pull over and take a nap.
3. Check your car before driving. Make sure the lights and blinkers work. Check your tires to make sure they’re not flat and look for engine leaks.
4. When you reach a stop sign, come to a complete stop. Then, count to four and check for oncoming cars ahead of you, to your left and to your right before going.
Week Two: Avoid Distractions
Distractions can mean the difference between life and death on the road. According to 2014 data from the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration, 10 percent of fatal crashes were due to distracted driving.
1. Don’t use your cell phone. Don’t text, make calls or use apps while driving.
2. If you have kids that are fighting, yelling or playing, pull over in a parking lot until they settle down.
3. Don’t eat or drink while driving.
4. Do not discuss serious matters with passengers. Any serious topic, no matter how urgent, can wait until you’re off the road. Also, don’t drive when you’re mad or upset.
5. Choose your music before you begin your journey. Don’t change the radio station or look for music on your phone or MP3 player while you’re driving. If you have a passenger, ask them to do it.
Week Three: Know the Laws
As an inexperienced driver, you may not be aware of all the traffic laws you should follow. While laws vary from state to state, here are some general traffic law tips:
1. Obey the speed limit at all times. Don’t be tempted to go faster just because other drivers are speeding.
2. Read every road sign carefully and obey them. For example, if you see a “No Passing Zone,” do not pass other cars.
3. If you’re driving on a four-lane highway, stay in the right lane unless you’re passing another car. The left lane is considered a passing lane.
4. Always stop for school buses with flashing lights, even if they’re in the other lane.
Week Four: Master Defensive Driving
In the final week of your challenge, you’re ready to master the art of defensive driving. Defensive driving is a skill that takes practice and it involves paying attention to other drivers so you can avoid accidents.
1. Follow the two-second rule, and stay at least two seconds behind the car in front of you.
2. Look both ways and always make sure other drivers stop when your light turns green. This keeps you from getting in an accident if someone runs a red light.
3. When you’re going to turn, signal this to other drivers by using your turn signal and gently pushing on your brakes.
4. Watch for tailgaters, or people following too close to you. If you notice this behavior, tap on your brakes and slow down to encourage the tailgater to back off or pass you.
Once you complete the 30-day safe driving challenge, you will develop great habits that make you a better driver and will help you save money on car insurance! Contact Freeway Insurance today for more information or a free quote.