Holidays are a time when we can take a break from our work routine, rest, and spend time with family and friends. Many people head to the country for the holidays or visit other cities and states. We mostly travel by car. Driving a car is now considered commonplace. But in fact, driving a car requires certain skills and knowledge. Lack of attention on the road can lead to serious consequences like car accidents resulting in numerous traumas, unnecessary expenses, and loss of time during legal procedures.
There’s a lot to do, a lot of stress, and a lot of fun over the holidays. Accidents, however, happen to all kinds of people, even during the holiday season. In fact, December has the highest rate of walking and driving accidents of any month. These accidents often occur when people are distracted by the events surrounding them or have been drinking alcohol, and the result is usually someone who scrapes their leg, bangs their head, or hurts their back. If your injuries prevent you from feeling like yourself during the holiday season, know that there are steps you can take to minimize any unnecessary stress.
Maintain your concentration.
Driving is essentially a mental task, and there is a lot to think about when you’re behind the wheel: road conditions, your speed and location, traffic regulations, signs, signals, road markings, following directions, being aware of the cars surrounding you, checking your mirrors—the list goes on. The ability to concentrate fully on driving is essential for avoiding a car accident. When a driver is doing something else, like talking on the phone or eating, he or she is less able to see problems and react to them in the right way. It’s not just beginner drivers who have problems with driving recklessly; even experienced drivers can get arrogant about their skills. Every driver needs to remind himself to stay on alert.
Stay on your guard.
When you’re sober and vigilant, you can avoid accidents like the one that happens when a tired or drunk driver slams on the brakes. Alcohol and drugs (including prescription and over-the-counter medicines) obviously impact a driver’s reaction time and judgment. Drunk driving has a similar effect and is one of the primary causes of accidents.
If you’ve been driving for a while in NYC, you should know that not everyone is a good driver, even though most people think they are. Some drivers speed aggressively. Some drivers don’t pay attention and end up in the wrong lane. Drivers may follow too closely, turn suddenly without sending a signal, or weave in and out of traffic. As more people “multitask” by chatting on the phone, texting or checking messages, eating, or even watching TV while they drive, inattentive or distracted driving is becoming a bigger problem. You can’t control the actions of other drivers. But maintaining your driving skills can help you avoid the dangers caused by other people’s bad driving.
Pay attention to the other drivers.
Part of maintaining control is being aware of other drivers and road users (and what they may do unexpectedly), so you are less likely to be surprised. If a car accelerates past you on the highway but there isn’t much space between the car and a slow-moving truck in the same lane, the driver will almost certainly try to slip into your lane straight in front of you. Understanding what another driver may do and making the necessary adjustments reduces your risk of a car accident.
Always put your safety first.
By avoiding your own aggressive and careless driving habits, you’ll be better prepared to deal with other people’s poor driving. Allow plenty of space between yourself and the vehicle in front of you. Always lock the doors and use your belt to avoid being thrown from the vehicle in the event of an accident.
Take note of your surroundings.
Regularly check your mirrors and scan the environment 20 to 30 seconds in advance. Maintain eye movement. To prevent being hit by a car that is driving aggressively, slow down or pull over. If the driver’s behavior makes you stressed, you should leave the road as soon as possible by turning right or taking the next exit. In addition, keep an eye on pedestrians, cyclists, and animals on the road.
Do not rely on others.
Take into account the others but prioritize your own safety. Don’t expect another driver to pull out of the way or allow you to merge. Assume that drivers will disregard red lights and stop signs and be ready to react to avoid a car accident. Plan your movements based on the most unlikely scenario.
Keep a distance.
Follow the 3-to-4-second rule. This rule will provide you with enough time to brake if necessary. However, this rule only applies in normal traffic and in good weather. If it’s raining, foggy, late at night, or you’re driving behind a big truck or motorcycle, add one second to the distance between you and the car in front of you.
Control your speed.
The defined speed limits are only for average conditions. You must make sure your speed is appropriate for the traffic conditions. Also, going faster makes it harder to keep control of your car if something goes wrong.
Have an alternate path of driving.
In all driving scenarios, positioning your vehicle where you have the highest chance of seeing and being seen is the best strategy to avoid a potential car accident. It is also critical to have an alternate line of movement, so always provide yourself an out — a spot to move your car if your current path of travel is unexpectedly blocked.
We understand that it can be difficult to find a good lawyer today. If you contact us at 1-800-HURT-511, we’ll put you in touch with multilingual attorneys that specialize in your type of case. In the event you have been injured, we will handle all legal issues on your behalf. We know how to get you compensated by the driver who injured you because we have handled similar instances all around New York. Call 1-800-HURT-511 now for a free case evaluation!