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Follow these steps to become a defensive driver

There are safe drivers, reckless drivers and those who lie somewhere in between. You don’t have any control over other drivers, but there are always things you can do to enhance your safety and attempt to avoid an accident.

One of the best things you can do is become a defensive driver. Here are five tips that will help you to do just that:

  • Always plan ahead. Think about what you’re getting into before you ever put your car in drive. For example, if you know you’ll sit in rush hour traffic, prepare your mind accordingly. This will help you make sound decisions when the time comes.
  • Don’t lose sight of others. You can’t watch everyone all the time, but you should keep a close eye on drivers close to your vehicle. If you spot someone driving in a reckless or aggressive manner, create as much space between your vehicles as possible.
  • Slow down. You shouldn’t drive dangerously slow, but you must keep one eye on your speed at all times. There’s a speed limit for a reason, and you should follow it.
  • Don’t drive aggressively. If other drivers become aggressive, it’s easy to fall into the same trap. You may assume you have to do the same in order to protect yourself. This isn’t true. You should remain a defensive driver regardless of what’s happening around you.
  • Becoming distracted. Being a defensive driver means paying attention to the road at all times. You shouldn’t send text messages while you’re driving, talk on the phone, eat or drink.

There are many types of distractions, all of which increase the risk of an accident. Don’t let these become a problem for you. When you actively try to become a defensive driver, it’s much easier to make progress. And as you make progress, you’ll realize that you feel better about your ability to remain safe.

If you’re part of a motor vehicle accident, pull to safety and take steps to protect your health and well-being. For example, call 911 and avoid confrontation with the person who caused the accident.

When the time comes, contact your insurance agent to file a claim and take steps to protect your legal rights.