Whether you’re a fresh, young teen or a fully-fledged adult, driving safely is essential in the modern world. After all, just about everyone needs a car in American nowadays. Unless you live in a large city with plenty of public transportation opportunities, most smaller cities demand that a citizen has at least one car.
Getting your license is an exciting experience. You now have the freedom to go wherever you want, whenever you want. But with great power comes great responsibility. As you venture out into the wild world of driving, it’s essential that you follow new driver safety tips to maintain your health — and the health of your car.
Are you a new driver? Consider these new driver safety tips to drive for years to come.
Get insurance ASAP
Did you know? In most states, you need to have auto insurance in order to legally operate a vehicle. If you drive without a license and get pulled over, you’ll likely get a ticket. But if you fail to pay that ticket or get too many, you could get arrested and have to rely on a bail bond agency to get you out of the slammer.
Driving without a license is tempting until you get pulled over or an accident occurs. Luckily, many home insurance policies also enable you to add on vehicle insurance as a bundled deal. Talk to your mortgage lender to see if they have any special plans like this. You never know where you might be able to save a few bucks on your most important purchases. It will also help you avoid tickets and arrests by driving legally. If you have more questions about the local driving laws in your area, don’t hesitate to reach out to an attorney that knows the ins and outs of your state’s laws. A big-name business might be more readily available, but a local business will have the knowledge needed to better serve you. You can also get more information from your fast bail bond service if you have any questions regarding court dates, fines, and more.
Keep in mind that your insurance rates will typically be higher as a new driver. After all, teen drivers are more likely to get into accidents than older drivers since they lack the experience on the road. Over time, and with a proven track record, your insurance rates will slowly start to dwindle. Insurance companies take new driver safety seriously, which is why the rates are higher. The more likely you are to get into an accident, the more likely you are to have to pay higher fees.
After all, an accident can happen at any time and for any reason. Weather is one of the most common causes of accidents, outside of drinking and driving and distracted driving. Let’s dive into some of the most common weather-related accidents that occur:
Watch the weather
One of the top overlooked new driver safety tips has to do with the weather. As stated above, inclement weather is a huge issue for drivers both new and old. Whether you live in the desert or the northeast, an accident can happen at any time. Practicing defensive driving and keeping an eye on the weather channel can help you avoid these accidents, but you should have a plan in place for when your best-laid plans go awry.
Accidents frequently occur due to hydroplaning. This occurs when a vehicle skids atop a slick, wet surface. No matter how much you tap your breaks, the thin layer of water can carry your car into a ditch, a guardrail, or even other vehicles. When you lose traction, the best thing you can do is to turn your wheel into the direction that you’re moving and wait for your car to gain traction again. Going the speed limit will also help since fast-moving cars are more likely to spin out than slower cars when it rains. Avoid sharp turns and be sure to rotate your tires often. It doesn’t matter if a space has experienced new parking lot paving or not; just about any car with older wheels can experience hydroplaning.
A similar issue can occur during the winter. Driving on black ice can cause your car to lose traction, resulting in a possible accident. Practicing defensive driving in the winter is essential to keeping your car — and your passengers — safe from harm.
That isn’t to say that only cold and wet areas are prone to weather issues. Glare from the sun can lead to many accidents, especially in the south. Be sure to pack your car with sun glasses to avoid injuring your eyes while you drive.
The impacts of bad weather can also affect the roads. Paving contractors are frequently needed in the north because of potholes from cold weather. When water makes its way into tiny cracks in the road, it will expand these cracks when it turns into ice. Over time, the road will wear away and you’ll be left with a pothole. Shallow potholes aren’t usually a big issue but big potholes can flip your car if you’re going too fast down the road.
You should also consider the effort it takes to maintain your car, including the potential weather that could affect it while it’s parked. You should always keep your car safely tucked behind quality garage doors and invest in the necessary garage spring repair if needed. This is to ensure your car isn’t exposed to the elements. Even something as small as pollen can alter your car’s paint job for the worse. Paired with the threat of falling tree branches, other cars, and hail, tucking your car behind a garage door with storage is key.
Luckily, there are plenty of garage door opener options to make storing your car all the easier. If you’re unable to invest in a garage door, then covering your car with a tarp or other cover is essential. Consider investing in these important options when it comes to maintaining your car.
Again, keep an eye on the weather forecast, especially before you go on any big road trips. Even a small rain shower could lead to disaster if you’re not driving carefully.
Follow the traffic laws
Some people might not think that the law applies to them. This is especially true if you’ve seen your parents run through a stoplight or a cop shirk their responsibilities and allow speeding to occur on the highway. Some people simply might not think that obeying the laws of traffic applies to them.
Rest assured that these laws are in place for a reason. Following the speed limit, using your turn signal, and stopping at every red light and stop sign is essential in keeping yourself — and those around you — safe from harm.
Traffic laws can also pertain to private properties. Countless restaurants, businesses, and private parking lots rely on towing assistance services to remove illegally parked cars. These services are better known for lugging your car away after an accident, but they’re vital parts of maintaining parking orders in crowded cities. Pay attention to the traffic signs whenever you try to park your vehicle. The last thing you want is to find that your car got towed or is locked in place with a yellow boot on the tire.
If you don’t follow the traffic laws, you’re bound to get into an accident sooner than later. Calling your auto accident attorney will only help so much if you’re the one responsible for the auto accident. If you don’t follow the rules of the road, then you may be hit with higher insurance rates, fines, and even land jail time if you incur too many tickets in a short period of time. Driving is fun, but it’s a big responsibility. Don’t play with your life, or the lives of other people on the road.
Know what to do after an accident
Getting into an accident for the first time is terrifying, whether you caused the collision or not. Here are some of the top things that you should do when you get into a car accident:
- Stay put — a hit and run accident is illegal, whether you caused the accident or not. Stay in or around your car until the police arrive. That’s new driver safety tip number one.
- Make sure you note any injuries that you have received. If you’re in serious pain, you will have to call an ambulance to make it to the hospital. Rest assured, you can sometimes have insurance help pay part of your medical bills. It’s not uncommon to need dental treatments and neck support following an accident. You will also want to check on your passengers if you have any and wrap any wounds if you don’t know how to treat a deep cut.
- Call the police and report your accident. They will be there to assist you, take any statements, and document the incident. Say as little as possible until your car accident attorney arrives.
- Document the crash by taking photos and writing down information about the other driver involved. Exchanging information is key when it comes to talking to your insurance.
- Go to the hospital or urgent care anyway. After the accident, aches and pains might start to show that weren’t there before. This is because your body’s adrenaline from the accident has finally started to dissipate. If you’re in an accident, be sure to get checked out sooner than later.
- Call your insurance and work with your attorney to get the compensation you deserve.
Surviving an accident can be stressful so don’t be afraid to lean on others with more experience. When it comes to new driver safety, everyone should want to help you stay safe.
Take care of your car’s interior
Cars get dirty so maintenance is essential in extending its lifespan. New driver safety tips revolve around maintenance just as much as they revolve around defensive driving. Just like you clean your car’s exterior, however, maintaining the interior is just as important. After all, you want a comfortable ride. Investing in the interior design of your car can make you feel just as relaxed as a comfortable interior design in your home. Clean your car’s carpets, shampoo the seats, and be sure to clean out the cupholders before bacteria starts to form. Cleaning your car’s interior is especially important in 2020 where coronavirus is a big threat. Simply wiping down the steering wheel and the dashboard can make a world of a difference.
Taking care of the inside of your car is essential when it comes to enjoying your driving experience, but it’s even more helpful if you ever plan on selling your car in the future. Few people want to buy a used car that was owned by a smoker since the interior will smell terrible. Taking care of your car is a part of being a responsible owner, but it’s key when it comes to maintaining the resale value down the line. Luckily, there are plenty of autobody supplies available online and around your local area (more often than not).
New driver safety tips to consider
Becoming a driver is one of life’s greatest joys but it comes with a lot of trials and tribulations. Before you take your car out on the road for the first time, remember the importance of new driver safety. Relying on your insurance, your defensive driving skills, and keeping an eye on the weather will all help you drive more safely. Consider these tips when you want to stay safer as a new driver.