Although we do it every day, most of us never think about how inherently dangerous driving on the freeway is. We’ve become accustomed to the velocity and acceleration, but think about it. You are encapsulated in a few inches of steel on either side of you, hurtling down the freeway at 95 feet a second, with in some cases just inches between you and other drivers. Accidents at this speed are often lethal. Still, we see drivers flying at unsafe speeds and making desperately dangerous maneuvers. While the motivations for such people is beyond the scope of this article (Oedipal fury, perhaps), there are a few things that we as safe driver can do to make the road a little safer for ourselves and those around us.
The first rule is simple: don’t drive faster than you are comfortable with! We often see people flying by at 80+ miles per hour, but this doesn’t mean that we have to go that fast. Speed limits on most freeways are between 55 and 65 miles per hour, and this is a good rate of speed. Those who feel comfortable in the far left lane going above the speed limit often do so safely, but flying down a middle lane at far above the posted speed is a great way to get killed. Which leads to my next point…
Highways in Phoenix are six lanes across in either direction, so outside of rush hour there is often plenty of space to move around in. When changing lanes, you should go back to your original driving lessons in your head. First, turn on your blinker! This lets everyone around you know what you’re doing. Second, glance in the rear view mirror and then up ahead to make sure you are not in someone’s blind spot. Then, check your own blind spot manually by turning and looking over your shoulder. Check your front again, and glance into the lane one over from where you are moving to ensure someone else isn’t trying to merge into where you want to be. Make a smooth transition over, and turn off your blinker. By “jumping” lanes or quickly merging without a blinker, you run the risk of hitting someone in your blind spot or merging into someone from the far lane.
These are just to freeway safe driving tips.
We take for granted the benefits of high speed travel in our every day life, but at the same time people are killed each and every day on freeways. Wearing your seatbelt, respecting the speed limit, and being a conscientious lane changer are just a few ways you can increase safety not just for yourself, but for all of us.
If you’ve been in an accident because of a negligent driver, contact an accident attorney today. Accident lawyers are specialists in pursuing damages in accidents caused by inattention, negligence, or drivers under the influence. An even better idea is to contact one prior to an accident so you have someone to contact right away.
Teen Driving Experience Log Book For New Drivers
To help train your teen on a wide range of driving skills a teen driving experience log book helps to ensure they are ready for the variety of road conditions. A teen driving experience log book allows the new driver and parent to identify if they are ready for their operators license.
Here are the components of the log and how to use them:
Date: Try to space driving lessons two to three days apart. This gives the teen driver enough time to process the lesson without causing learning fatigue. Try not to let too much time go by between lessons (for example, letting your teen practice driving only on weekends).
Try to conduct driving lessons in at least two different vehicles, even if your teen will only be using one of the family cars after being licensed. Teen drivers need to understand the differences between accelerating, steering, and braking different vehicles. Teach your teen to spend a few minutes getting familiar with the location of the gearshift, headlights, defroster, windshield wipers, and gauges when you conduct training in a new vehicle.
Resist the temptation to allow your teen to practice driving only on familiar routes close to home (for example, to and from the nearest grocery store). While it is important to conduct training in these areas, your teen will likely be driving farther from home soon after being licensed. Expand routes to include challenging roads, such as expressways, as your teen gains experience and skill.
Just as with routes, new drivers should practice a variety of maneuvers. For example, teens should practice parallel parking on downtown streets as well as straight-in parking in shopping center parking lots. They need to learn how to make three-point turns, how to drive in a roundabout, and how to pull safely off the road if the vehicle overheats. Parents who are having trouble creating diverse lesson plans should consult a resource such as the National Safety Commission’s Driver Education Handbook for Parents.
Parents may be hesitant to ride with an inexperienced driver on slippery roads, but new drivers will eventually have to contend with driving in inclement weather conditions. They should get this experience while a parent is still present to provide guidance. Most teens are not capable of comprehending the risks of reduced visibility and hydroplaning on their own.
This is a good place to make note of routes and maneuvers with which the teen driver needs additional practice. Staggering lessons so the teen is not practicing the same complicated concepts in consecutive sessions will reduce frustration for both parties.
Prep Time: Teach your teen driver to conduct a pre-trip inspection of the vehicle. Record this time and lecture time (keep lectures short to compensate for teens’ short attention spans)
Actual Driving Time:
End each training session when you sense that you and/or your teen are approaching fatigue, but try to end each lesson on a positive note. If your teen struggles during a lesson, spend the final few minutes practicing a technique she or he already does well.
Day Driving Time; Night Driving Time: The 50 hours of driving experience including ten hours at night required by the GDL law is a minimum. You are the best judge of how much training your teen needs to be a safe driver.
Calmly discuss your teen’s progress. Be sure to allow your teen to give feedback. Reassure your teen that you will continue practicing difficult maneuvers and offer praise for her or his successes.
Teaching their teen to drive is a stressful, emotional experience for many parents, but making training time count is one of the most important things you will ever do for your child.