5 Driving Mistakes that can take heavy toll

10% of the fatal accidents on roads are because of distracted driving according to the NHTSA. Despite the fact that you are abiding by the law, one wrong move while driving can take a heavy toll where the question of what you can do and what not arises.

It makes me wonder what we are doing some trivial mistakes with a heavy price on the roads that we need to avoid to ensure safe driving.

1. Using Hands-free is dangerous

Talking on phone no matter with the set in your hands or hands-free is with the fact that you are responsible for driving a 2,000- to 3,000-pound block of steel on the road. Any small mistake can turn the scene within seconds. The studies have shown that talking on the phone has caused accidents, not holding the set in hands. The limit of focus of an average person is four objects at one time.

Breaking down the mechanics of driving, steering, accelerating, shifting, changing the radio station, and braking—getting a phone call may create an imbalance. Not necessary that you are talking; but still you are listening to the person on the other end, thinking about what he said, and then replying. All the attention may be drawn to the conversation and the driving may be compromised.

2. Do not swerve on the roads

Staying in your lane is the basic principle on roads. Easy to say! But it’s not like that. A lot of the drivers on the roads unconsciously take the road signs as guides, not absolutes; they move over them without calculating the upshot. According to the data in 2007, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported the casualties of 15,574 people because of veering of the drivers out of their lanes. Same year, 13,041 people were reported to be killed in the accidents by the alcohol-impaired drivers. Looks frightening!

3. Failure to give way

Some more annoying things have been reported when the failure of give way has caused accidents. The drivers above 70 are failing to yield the right of way. Not limited to just over age drivers, in 2007, the fifth biggest cause of the fatal accidents was failure to yield the right of way.

4. Running red lights brings about horrible results

75% of all car crashes are occurring in urban areas. Any guesses why? Drivers are in a hurry. They are running red light. About 1,000 deaths and almost 90,000 injuries every year are caused by the red light running.

The situation has got worse and the highway authorizes had to install red light cameras on the busy intersections. The coercive effect of a heavy hit to the wallet has brought about a 10% to 40% drop in accidents caused by the red light running.

5. Don’t ride the brakes, control the speed

Yes, true that! It’s hard enough. Driving in the winding hill and steep areas, using gas pedals are not necessary. But braking is a different thing. Even though it’s not recommended to ride the brakes, but practically it’s not possible. What’s the solution then? Braking down a long grade with controlling the speed with the transmission is the answer. It is called “engine braking” that slows down the vehicle while using the compression of the engine. If you are using manual transmission, it means you are shifting to the lower gear, such as shifting from fifth to fourth gear in a five-speed transmission. In the vehicles using automatic transmissions, it is a shift into the gear that is next-lowest like from D4 to D3. So we need more care while driving. 

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