Learning the rules of the road is essential for any driver. Whether that’s crucial car maintenance to perform or the rules of the road, doing some research on how to be a safe driver is vital.
With being a safe driver, one must know how to drive alongside others like cyclists and local pedestrians properly. Doing so can help reduce the chance of an accident involving cyclists or walkers from happening on the road.
How can I be more careful driving?
Here are helpful tips you can follow to make sure you stay safe on the road:
- Assume pedestrians are everywhere. The National Safety Council reported that pedestrian fatalities have been increasing, with more than 7,000 reported deaths in 2017. When driving or teaching a younger driver, assume pedestrians may be anywhere, from parking lots to street corners.
- Think like a pedestrian. Many pedestrians are injured most when it’s dark and not as visible by drivers. Consider their presence on every trip. When driving, take curves slowly and cautiously drive on more unlit roads. Better to take longer getting home than risk an accident.
- Use clear signals. Using your turning signals when changing lanes and parking is essential to keeping those around you safe. Try to make eye contact or connect with pedestrians when doing so to let them know you’re aware of them.
- Assume pedestrians are distracted. The number of pedestrian deaths has risen sharply in the past 30 years due to distracted walking and driving. You can only control your actions, so be mindful and present when driving, and you may prevent an accident!
While pedestrians should also be taking precautions when walking, it works best if motorists and pedestrians work together to keep everyone safe. Working together means being conscientious and aware of others when driving and walking.
Sharing the Road with Cyclists
Cycling is prevalent in many cities, particularly in fair-weather cities. Many cities have created bike paths and lanes to assist bikers in commuting, and many environmental organizations champion biking as a way to cut down on smog and pollution.
However, it’s important to be aware of cyclists’ sharing the road because any accident with a cyclist will do far more damage to the biker. Also, it would help if you were mindful of them when parked due to bike lanes. Here are some tips to consider:
- Use signals. Bicyclists are allowed in many cases to use the road similarly to vehicles. You may see bicyclists in the turning lane, for example. Make sure to signal for their safety and your own.
- Use the far-hand reach. When parked, use the hand farthest from your door to open it. This will cause your body to swivel and check the mirror for cyclists naturally. Opening the door into a cyclist sounds minor, but it can cause severe injuries to the rider, and damage your door. Getting into this habit will help you avoid this fate.
- Scan the road. Teach new drivers to always scan left to right at intersections, and to sweep frequently, so they’re aware of approaching cyclists or pedestrians.
What to Do if an Accident Occurs
Sometimes, you may do all you can to avoid it, but an accident still happens. If you are involved in a collision with a cyclist or pedestrian, make sure to do the following:
- Stop immediately. Stop your car and pull over to a safe space if necessary. If the pedestrian or cyclist is injured, make sure they get assistance.
- Exchange information. As with any incident, you will want to exchange contact information with the other involved party in case you need to contact them for any reason.
- Evaluate what happened. After you’ve emotionally recovered from the shock, take stock of what happened and why. It may be an opportunity to update some driving habits and be safer on your next trip.
Distracted drivers can cause accidents that are fatal for pedestrians and cyclists, so it’s best to abstain.
Prepare for the unexpected
We want to get you back on the road again, America. Like many things in life, preparing for the unexpected matters now more than ever. With car repairs ranging from $1,000 to $3,000, Endurance is here to help cover sudden breakdowns by paying the mechanic directly for both parts and labor.
Request a no-obligation quote or call the number below to hear about our current relief program and minimal down-payment option. Every Endurance warranty also comes with a 1-FREE year of the Endurance Elite Membership, which comes with $250 in shopping vouchers, tire replacement/reimbursement, key fob replacement, and more.