Everybody is taught how to drive properly through a driver’s Ed school. Most schools follow the same teaching techniques to introduce the students to safe driving procedures. Once they pass their drivers test and get on the road, they get more comfortable driving and start to forget some of the lessons they learned in driver’s Ed. Doing this could result in bad driving habits that may end up causing an accident. Here are the most common bad habits drivers have and what you can do to break them.
Tailgating is the most common bad driving habit, and sometimes we forget we are even doing it. When it’s stop and go traffic, we see the flow of traffic and try to get as close to the car in front of us as we can, everybody does it! However, it isn’t the safest way to drive. There is a higher risk of bumping into the car in front of you if you tailgate rather than leaving some space between you. You will be getting to your destination at the same time if you don’t tailgate, so leave a little room to keep safe!
Checking Your Blind Spots
Checking your blind spots, especially when merging into a different lane, is more than just looking at your mirrors and guessing that nobody is beside you. You have to physically move your neck before switching lanes to see if it’s safe to merge. 99% of the time our mirrors will show us that a car is beside us, but it’s that 1% we have to be on the lookout for. Ensure you are safe 100% of the time by always checking your blind spots.
Impractical Hand Positions
If you took driver’s Ed, you were probably taught to always hold the wheel at 10 and 2. This is an outdated technique due to smaller steering wheels and the new position is 9 and 3. Even still, people drive with their hands wherever they feel comfortable. Some people drive with one hand at the top of their steering wheel while the other one rests on the window or armrest. Manual drivers will drive with one hand on the wheel while the other one manages the gear stick.
For some reason, people drive with their knees or gripping the wheel with their palms facing them. The last two examples are the ones you should be avoiding at all costs. You should never steer with your knees or with your palms facing towards you. Not only is it dangerous if you need to regain control of your vehicle, it also hinders your basic driving skills like turning a corner or merging into another lane. Keep your hands on the wheel at all times, and keep them in a position that will help you turn or recover your vehicle if you accidentally spin out.
Not Using Your Blinker
Your blinker is used to indicate to other drivers where you want to go. Nobody can read your mind, so when you cut in front of somebody without using your blinker, it could cause the car behind you to slam on their brakes and potentially cause an accident. Even if you are driving in the middle of the night and nobody else is on the road, use your blinker to keep in the habit of using it. It’s a simple thing to do but a lot of people seem to have forgotten they exist. Be courteous to your other drivers and use your blinker!
All credit goes to Merge Driving School