At the Law Firm of Michael T. Gibson we would like to take a moment and wish you a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year. We would like to thank our clients and dedicated staff for making this past year possible and look forward to serving you in 2018!
We would also like to remind you to make safe driving a priority this year. Whether you have had your driver’s license for years or are new to the roads, the below safe driving tips will help keep you and your loved ones safe on the roads in 2018.
Get plenty of rest. If you are planning on driving a far distance, whether it be for business or vacation, make sure and get plenty of rest the night before. Caffeinated beverages can only go so far. The effects of caffeine can recede with time and your attention span my falter, even though you remain awake behind the wheel. Drowsy driving and intoxicated driving share some of the same side effects, which include: impairments in judgment, vision, performance and reaction time.
Proper vehicle maintenance. Make sure your vehicle is always in prime condition — that tires are properly inflated, all fluids are at their proper levels and you have a full tank of gas. This is especially important if you are planning a road trip. For added peace of mind, have a mechanic perform a thorough check of your vehicle.
Buckle up! Drivers and passengers not wearing a seatbelt are 30 times more likely to be ejected from the vehicle. For drivers and front seat passengers, seat belts reduce the risk of death by 45% and cut the risk of serious injury by 50%, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Not only do seatbelts save lives, buckling up is the law in most states.
Child passenger safety. Auto accidents are a leading cause of death for children in the United States. Many of these deaths can be prevented by parents properly securing their children in the car. Age (and size-appropriate) car seats and booster seats are essential and reduce serious and fatal injuries to young children by more than half.
Avoid speeding. Speeding is one of the most prevalent factors contributing to traffic crashes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). It is also 100% preventable.
Drive distraction-free. Many people believe distracted driving applies only to teen drivers. But in fact, according to a recent study by AT&T, adults are more likely to text and drive. Distracted driving constitutes as any activity that diverts a person’s attention away from driving. These distractions endanger the lives of passengers, pedestrians and drivers and can include any of the following:
- Using a cell phone or smartphone
- Adjusting the radio
- Eating and drinking
- Talking to passengers
- Personal grooming
- Using a navigation system
- Watching a video
Out of all of these driving distractions, texting while driving is the most dangerous, as text messages require visual, manual and cognitive attention from the driver.
Follow the two-second rule. There is no reason to ever be tailgating another driver. This is considered a form of aggressive driving. The two-second rule is a good rule of thumb, which requires a driver to maintain a safe following distance at any speed. A driver should ideally stay at least two seconds behind any vehicle that is directly in front of the driver’s vehicle. By following the two-second rule, you will be able to react quicker to road hazards and any unexpected disturbances in traffic patterns.
Do not drive impaired. According to Century Council, there were a total of 660 fatal driving accidents due to impaired driving with 69 of those drivers being underage. DUI’s are not just alcohol-related. Prescription drug use while behind the wheel can also constitute impaired driving and result in a DUI. It is important to read warning labels on your medications and always be prepared to have a designated driver.
Know the signs of aggressive driving and avoid it. Yelling at other drivers, tailgating and accelerating through yellow lights are all forms of aggressive driving. If you feel your emotions are running high while behind the wheel, pull over to a safe place to calm down. Not only will you feel better, you will help prevent an accident.
If you or a loved one have been involved in a car accident, it is important that you contact an experienced Orlando Auto Accident Lawyer immediately. We can guide you through the process of dealing with your insurance company to make sure you are adequately compensated for your injuries and losses. Our experienced team of accident attorneys will help you obtain compensation for medical bills, future medical treatment, loss of wages, pain and suffering, etc. Feel free to fill out our quick contact form on our website to discuss your legal options in greater detail.