Getting a license imbues new drivers with a sense of newfound freedom in their ability to roam the country and often makes it seem like the possibilities are endless. While every new driver should certainly appreciate and enjoy this wonderful new milestone, it is still important to remember that driving is a privilege and should be taken seriously. If you are a new driver, you this means inherently lacking the experience that seasoned drivers acquired over time. With practice, however, you will eventually be able to navigate the roads with ease. Until then, you need to exercise extra care and caution and be wary of the top mistakes beginner drivers make. The last thing you want to do is learn by making mistakes that could ultimately cost your life or the lives of others.
Below are some of the top mistakes beginner drivers make and tips on how you can avoid them:
- Misreading the road: On main routes, road signs are usually kept in good condition and are able to clearly inform drivers when there is an upcoming sharp corner or another unexpected road feature, such as dips or gravel. However, in rural areas, these signs are less likely to even exist, or might appear more infrequently. Even there are road signs, conditions might not make it easy for you to see them. For example, if it is nighttime or the weather is particularly bad, you might easily miss a sign warning you of any upcoming road features or obstacles. As a new driver, you should always drive with caution and maintain a slower speed to account for your reaction times, which are not as sharp as an experienced driver.
- Speeding: Cars are incredibly refined nowadays, so much that you can often barely hear the engine, even at high speeds. They are also much easier to handle and more comfortable than previous generations, all of which make it easier for drivers to speed. As a new driver, you might not realize just how fast you are going, as opposed to seasoned drivers who are able to judge speed and quickly make adjustments without having to monitor the speedometer. Speeding will not only earn you a ticket and spike the cost of your insurance, but it is also incredibly dangerous. Without the keen reaction time of an experienced driver, you might encounter an obstacle or a sharp turn you do not have the time to react to, especially while driving at a high speed. Stay safe and maintain a slower speed that gives you a chance to react to road conditions.
- Tires and maintenance: As a new driver, you have probably never had to maintain a vehicle nor do you know what it fully entails. That is why it is so important to educate yourself on the basics of vehicle maintenance. Of course, one of the most important features of your vehicle is its tires. It is crucial to regularly check their tread depth and pressure, which you can do on your own, with simple and easy-to-use tools. For other maintenance needs, such as oil changes, you can take your car to a professional. You might be a new driver, but ignorance is not an excuse for not maintaining your car.
- Fatigued driving: Another mistake new drivers tend to make is driving in an exhausted or fatigued state. Not only are your senses not sharp as a new driver, but fatigue can further dull your reflexes. If you fall asleep for more than a couple of seconds, you will almost certainly drive off the road. You might be able to stave off tiredness for a short while by rolling down the window or cranking the air conditioning, but the only way to really protect yourself is to make a safe stop and take a nap. Additionally, as a new driver, you should plan to get more rest if you know you are going to be on the road. Nothing is worth risking your life for.
- Distracted driving: No one, no matter how experienced, should ever drive while distracted. What is distracted driving? It is the act of partaking in any activity that takes your attention away from driving, including using a cell phone, eating and drinking, talking to passengers, grooming, adjusting a GPS, adjusting a playlist, or even simply daydreaming and zoning out. If you need to answer a text or a call, stop somewhere safe or wait until you reach your destination. If you need directions to reach your destination, set a route in your GPS before you put the vehicle in gear. There is a multitude of ways to avoid having to divide your attention, so make sure you take every precaution necessary to keep your focus on the task at hand.
Personal Injury Attorneys in Lynchburg
If you were recently injured in a motor vehicle accident that was caused by a negligent driver, now is the time to seek the skilled and experienced legal assistance you need to obtain the compensation you deserve. At Randall J. Trust, P.C., our family-owned firm in Lynchburg will provide personalized and aggressive representation for every client to ensure justice is served.
Contact our office today at (434) 738-2300 to schedule a free consultation with a knowledgeable member of our legal team.