Nearly crashing into a road divider, hearing your teacher (mostly a parent or a sibling) scream at you, struggling with the reverse gear, and everything in between – ring any bells? These shared experiences are common for anyone who has decided to master the art of driving. But is getting acquainted with the ABCs (Accelerator, Brake, Clutch) enough?
Driving is like aged wine, with time it becomes more polished and impeccable. However, be it a seasoned or an inexperienced driver, apart from the practice they need to hone certain skills which are imperative for their own safety, along with that of the passengers and other vehicles. Hang on tight, as this blog will take you on a ride to explore good driving behaviour that you need to inculcate for a safer journey each time you get behind the wheel.
1. Spatial Awareness – Whenever the issue of safe driving behaviour crops up, the foremost skill a driver must sharpen is his/her ability to be completely aware of their surroundings. The driver must be cognizant of whatever is happening inside and outside of the vehicle. Your sight shouldn’t be limited only to the car ahead of you and should scale and scrutinize the vehicles and lanes that surround you. Being aware drastically deters the possibility of distracted driving and enables you to completely focus on safety.
2. Know your Vehicle – While this skill is often not paid much heed, it is an essential life skill you must excel at. Within the periphery of mastering driving behaviour, also comes the ability to ensure whether your vehicle is performing at its peak. You must train yourself to check your vehicle for oil changes, coolant refills, tire pressure checks, and the like along with the proficiency to change tires or identify general problems with the engine.
3. Defensive Driving – A lesser-known term, defensive driving refers to behavioural practices aimed at reducing accidents. With defensive driving, you become cautious and take your safety into your own hands. As part of your driver behaviour you would indulge in assessing the potential risks ahead, avoid overspeeding, multi-tasking and relying on other drivers to drive safely, maintain a safe distance from other vehicles, constantly checking the mirrors, and blind spots, and discard anything that may impair your focused driving. Defensive driving equips a driver to be able to predict potentially hazardous situations and entails the required attitude for accident avoidance.
4. Adherence to Laws of the Land – Possessing knowledge pertaining to traffic symbols, laws and regulations is a vital inclusion in the safety kit for driving. More pertinent, is, however, adherence to said laws and regulations. Wearing helmets and seatbelts, driving without any form of intoxication, avoidance of phone usage, familiarity with right of way, appropriate understanding of when to use upper/dipper, reading and interpreting traffic signs, and awareness about actions that invite fine and/or imprisonment are but a few ammunitions in the skillset of safe driving behaviour.
5. Accommodating Different Atmospheric Patterns - Good and safe driving should be practiced irrespective of weather conditions. The atmospheric condition should not intercept your efforts at creating a risk-free driving experience. Special caution should be administered while driving in rainy seasons or during a snowfall by ensuring your vehicle, especially your tires are qualified for a drive in such a situation. Slow, calm, and careful driving is the answer under such pressing weather conditions. Be prepared to ride a skid and ensure a clean and clear window for visibility. Being on the lookout for deep puddles and/or heaps of snow is an added bonus for a guaranteed safe trip.
6. Driving Techniques – At times, you might encounter a situation that will call on certain driving techniques you must possess. Hydroplaning is one such circumstance wherein your vehicle loses traction with the road due to the water underneath, usually leading to an accident. In this situation, it is important to fight the need to slam your brakes and instead, gently use light pumping actions for braking. Working on your hand-eye coordination to recover from a slide with easeful steering and careful acceleration in order to gain back control of the vehicle is another technique that enhances your chances of safe driving behaviour. Driving up steep hills may seem like a difficult task for many but with proper foot control and appropriate release of the clutch, the uphill journey becomes easier.
Why Safe Driving – Is it Worth it?
Toiling towards mastering the aforementioned skills requires utmost diligence. While not exhibiting these behaviours might suffice for some time, in the long run, without any shred of doubt, these skills would protect the lives of you and your dear ones.
Safety shouldn’t be taken for granted. Compromise in the avenue of road safety will lead to both human and monetary loss. As members of society, people have an individual and a collective responsibility towards each other. At an individual level, we can ensure safety on the road by learning and absorbing the recommended behavioural traits. On the other hand, collective responsibility draws its purpose from organizations, industries, and companies that work within the wheels of society. These profit-oriented organizations owe it to the community within which it functions to safeguard the lives of those engaged in the capacity of employees. Companies can do their part in the field of road safety and employee safety by resorting to various driver safety solutions. Given the advent of newer technologies, driving-behaviour monitoring software and driving safety apps can be applied for the safety of those employees who are a part of the company’s field force.
SafetyConnect is one such driving safety app that empowers the company to analyze the driving safety of employees on the field with its unique features, thereby, motivating them to adopt safer driving traits. SafetyConnect will help companies do their share for the safety of society at large as well as individual employees and fulfill the responsibility of road safety that it owes by preventing accidents.
Companies can request a free demo to learn more about our product and ensure safe driving of their employees.