It’s easy to become complacent about driving skills. Many of us go for years without experiencing any close calls or near misses. As a result is it possible to become too relaxed about the business of driving. Perhaps it wouldn’t hurt to look at ways to improve our driving for this New Year.
Driving At Night
Always more of a challenge to drivers but too many of us continue to drive as if it’s broad daylight. At night, drivers can only see as far as street lighting or headlights allow. As a result an incident could happen much closer before it was seen so it’s essential to be able to stop in the distance you can see to be clear, not where you can‘t. Use headlights on full beam where it is dark and it won’t dazzle anyone else, and (especially in the darker winter months) keep windows and mirrors clean to maximise your view.
Keep ‘Em Peeled
The National Health Service recommends that everybody has an eye test every two years. Just because you didn’t need spectacles last year doesn’t mean to say your eyesight has not deteriorated in the meantime. It is your responsibility to ensure you’re fit to drive. If you don’t, the DVLA, Police and, crucially, your insurance company will take a dim view – no pun intended!
Weather Or Not
All drivers should pay attention to weather forecasts all year round. That way, if the weather is going to be really bad then consideration can be given to whether the journey is necessary or not. What about alternative transport?
Keep It Clean, Keep It Cheap
Cleanliness is next to, erm, ‘safelyness’. Clean your windows, lights, mirrors and number plates as often as required. Every week without fail you should spend ten minutes checking your vehicle’s fluid levels, tyre pressures, lights, tread depth and windscreen wipers.
Good driving is also eco-driving. Planning a route means that fuel (and time) can be saved. By understanding your car – its power and gears – will help to save fuel, and it is a safer way to drive as well. It doesn’t have to be boring to be a better driver.