A report by World Health Organization suggests that approximately 1.24 million deaths occur every year on the world’s roads and an even greater number of people are injured i.e. 50 million. Furthermore, about 30% of all car accidents are attributed to over speeding while another 38%, in some way, are related to alcohol. The financial loss and the psychological impact caused by these accidents can be greatly abridged if drivers could take a few precautionary measures. Mentioned below are a few tips regarding ways of avoiding car accidents.
- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conservatively estimates that 100,000 police-reported crashes are the direct result of driver fatigue each year. This results in an estimated 1,550 deaths, 71,000 injuries, and $12.5 billion in monetary losses.
Whenever you go out for a drive, make sure to take some rest or a quick nap beforehand. An exhausted or a sleepy driver is a danger to himself as well as to the people he comes across.
If you are feeling sleepy while driving, the first thing you should try is to pull over and get some snacks and fresh air. Also take a short nap in the car if you feel like it. This short break might save you from running into a car crash.
- Always wear a seat belt. Seat belts reduce serious crash-related injuries and deaths by about half.Students, during driving tests are made to wear seat belts in every ministry approved driving school.Seat belts prevent injuries when the passenger, just after an accident, is lunging towards the windscreen or the side windows.According to NHTSA, in 2006 over 15,000 lives were saved by seat belt use and almost 13,000 lives in 2009. Therefore, it is evident that seat belts are one of the most essential aspects of defensive driving.
- If you are driving a new car or a car that you have not driven before, it is usually a good idea to familiarize yourself with all the equipment of the car i.e. horns, brakes, hazard lights etc. and most importantly, the stopping distance of the car. Take the car for a test drive and note how the car responds to your commands and then settle yourself accordingly.
- Keep your car in a good shape. A regular visit to your mechanic would be a good idea here as you never know when the car is going to break down on you. Also, the mechanic would take care of the car’s fluids and change them at regular intervals. Moreover, it is essential for the car to get a thorough checkup by a specialist during the weather changing time of the year.
- Whenever you go out for a long journey, always remember to keep a GPS device with you. The advanced GPS devices come with a built in weather forecast system. These new GPS devices not only give proper routes to different destinations, but also tell the user when it would be safe to drive. These devices are particularly helpful for people living in hilly areas.
Apart from that, one should also keep a map of the area he is traveling to, just in case the GPS device malfunctions.