Know Your Rights

Making driving safer by adjusting your attitudes

You may be a relatively safe driver, but did you know there are things that good drivers do and fail to do that can have a negative effect on their driving or on how other drivers react to them in traffic situations?

Besides following the rules of the road there are a number of things drivers can do to improve their driving and contribute to making the roadways safer. It is every driver’s responsibility to learn good driving practices to help prevent car accident injury to themselves, their families, and others they share the roadways with. A few of these practices include just a little attitude adjustment such as:

  • Focusing
  • Allowing others to pass
  • Always using turn signals
  • Never switching lanes in inappropriate places
  • Never trying to beat the light
  • Being a courteous driver
  • Keeping a comfortable distance between you & the driver in front of you
  • Making an effort to change lanes for utility & other workers as well as emergency vehicles
  • Being polite if stopped by a police officer
  • Never using the shoulder or the median to get around stopped traffic

Safer Driving Involves Strategies Linked to Courteous Driving

When you are driving your focus should be on driving, not changing the radio station, looking at e-mail, checking your makeup in the mirror, and any one of hundreds of distracted driving behaviors we are all guilty of doing at one time or another. By keeping the focus on our driving we gain precious seconds of reaction time that may be needed to avoid an accident and are able to look ahead and recognize potential roadway problems or conditions that we can proactively avoid.

Allowing others to pass, being polite to police officers, and making an effort to change lanes for utility & other workers as well as emergency vehicles is all part of being a courteous driver. Courteous driving effects the reactions of others and can help prevent road rage, or just inappropriate driving by others who are having a “bad day.” It may also have a “pay it forward” effect on others who want to pass the courtesy you extended to them on to others.

Always using your turn signals lets other drivers and pedestrians know your intentions in advance so they can react appropriately.

Never switch lanes in inappropriate places or use the shoulder or median to get around stopped traffic. Intersections are complex places where high concentrations of vehicles are entering, exiting, turning, or going straight within a small space of roadway. Using a shoulder or median can put pedestrians and bicyclists at risk by creating driving lanes where they do not exist.

When you are approaching an intersection and the light turns yellow, do you give it a little more gas so you can get through before the light turns red? That yellow light does not stay yellow for long, and you may wind up running a red light or at the worst, causing a car accident as the other driver is entering the intersection on his green light. That yellow light is telling you to slow down and prepare to stop.

Keep a comfortable distance between yourself and the car in front of you. The rule of thumb is to keep at least 2 to 4 seconds between you and the driver in front of you. This space allows you the reaction time you need to stop or turn into another lane if the car in front of you suddenly stops or stalls or goes into slide or spin on a slippery roadway.

Despite the fact you are a courteous driver and doing everything right, you may still find yourself injured in a car accident that was the fault of another. When this happens you should talk to a personal injury attorney who can help you understand your rights and what legal options are available to you.

Helping Atlanta Car Accident Victims

Joel Baskin has been helping Atlanta car accident victims for two decades to recover the compensation they needed and deserved. As an Atlanta car accident attorney, Joel has the experience and knowledge to help you. Give Joel a call to schedule your free initial consultation and learn what he can do for you. With offices in Vinings and East Point, Joel serves the Atlanta area from convenient locations in Cobb & Fulton counties.

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