Driving is sometimes referred to as an art form. Sometimes it is simply viewed as a convenient way to get from point A to B. Whatever you want to call it, there are important rules you should know. The essential rules regarding safe driving are called essential because they are not just suggestions, but mandatory to know while operating a vehicle on the road.
What exactly makes them essential, beyond just the legal reasons? For starters, they are essential for your safety, other motorists’ safety, and provide an enjoyable experience for all.
Here is a list of some of those essential rules.
Safe Distance While Driving
You cannot control what other motorists do, but you can control what you do. Tailgating is a persistent issue that many drivers deal with and know how annoying and dangerous it can be. Driving at a safe distance, which varies between one car length, one and a half lengths, and up to two car lengths depending on the situation, is advised to avoid a fender bender or serious ramming from occurring if someone has to slam on their breaks at a moments notice.
Merging Rules on Highways
Highway driving can be a stressful situation for many people because of the speed of other drivers and the number of drivers. Highway driving can be very safe if you follow the common precautions like following the speed limit or the flow of traffic, staying a safe distance away from other drives, and using your signals and mirrors to check where you are going. One problem for highway driving is lane merging and this is especially a concern for city drivers, like those in California, with their massive highway systems that have many on-ramps and other bypasses. Accidents happen when drivers do not merge properly, and you would want to consult a Pasadena car accident lawyer for an experience dealing, in case the situation calls for it. The merging that needs to be adhered to is speeding up if necessary to make sure you can get into the lane, always checking the other drivers. Slowing down while entering into this merging lane because it can cause accidents by interrupting traffic speed too.
Utilizing Mirrors and Signals
As briefly mentioned in the previous point, you must use your mirrors and signals when making lane changes or turns. When learning to drive it is often taught that you should rotate through looking at each of your three mirrors often. The driver’s side mirror, rearview mirror, and passenger side mirror are all your best friends in making sure you know what or who is around you. They can help see cars, except for the blind spot, as well as pedestrians when making merges or turns. There is also the need to always use your signal when making movements. Safe driving means being able to show other motorists what you are going to do so they have time to react. When people do not use signals it is hard for others to know what they are doing and often leads to accidents.
Be Cautious, But Not Too Cautious
Being a cautious driver can help keep you out of sticky situations, but it can also get you injured if you are overly cautious too. When yielding it is important to know who is in the right. Likewise, and similar to merging, it is important not to hesitate if it is safe to do so. Being cautious or hesitating while driving can result in accidents just like being overly confident.
Another common safe driving rule is the three-second rule. This rule means that you need to wait three seconds while stopped at a stop sign, but it is not just as simple as that. Waiting three seconds is not meant just to keep you from lightly tapping on your breaks, then going, it is meant to help you survey the area around you and the stop sign. It gives you time to see if any cars are coming in too fast and are unlikely to stop. On a legal note, a full stop is usually considered when your car comes to a complete stop for three seconds.
Driving safely is not only for your own safety but for the safety of the other motorists. These rules listed here are not the only ones you should follow, but they are definitely among the essential rules you should stick to when driving. Knowing how to keep everyone safe on the road, and those nearby is a skill that we should all strive for.