You Are At: AllSands Home > Howto > How to be a safe driver
All of us have a responsibility to be safe drivers. But even the most careful drivers can take easy preventative steps to help make them even safer drivers. If you become one of these drivers, and commit to do the following things, you may save your own life or the lives of others.

Keep Your Visibility High
Many accidents each year are caused by two elements of nature: sun and rain. All of us have driven on roads that put the rising or setting sun right in our wind shields or rear view mirrors. But in sunny weather, most of us do not think about the hazards of low visibility. Yet sun can be more blinding than the worst snow or rain. That is why everyone should have a pair of sun glasses in their cars or on their person at all times.

As for rain, making sure your windshield wipers are in good working order is the most important step. Another problem comes when the rain stops but mud or water spots are caked on your car's windshield. Always carry a rag or towel in your car to clean up these hazards to visibility.

Let Others See You
As important as watching out for other drivers is, it is also important to help other drivers to look out for you. One great way to do this is to leave your headlights on, even during the day. Studies have shone that day running headlights increase visibility and reduce accidents. Many new cars have this feature automatically, but for older cars, drivers should take it upon themselves to turn those headlights on, especially on windy two lane roads.

Calm Down
Most of us would never drive drunk. But did you know that driving while extremely upset is just as bad. If you are extremely angry, sad, nervous, or sick, you cannot pay proper attention to your driving. And even when you can pay attention you drive with less skill. If you experience any of these conditions, postpone your trip. If you are already on the road, pull over to a safe place and get your bearings. Lost time will be MINIMIZED by avoiding potentially deadly accidents.

Back Off
One of the biggest causes of accidents is following too close. Yet following the car ahead of you too close is senseless: it can result in being ticketed, it is dangerous, and it doesn't get you anyplace any faster. Always leave more distance than you think you should have to between you and the car in front of you. And in the rain, double that distance.

Keep Away Distractions
Cell Phones, Automated Direction Systems, Newspapers, Razors… all of these things are an accident waiting to happen in the car. Driving requires one's full attention. So communicating, eating, reading, or doing anything else in the car that isn't driving is a big hazard. Even if you think you drive perfectly fine while doing these things, you are still less able to compensate for the mistakes of other drivers when your full attention isn't directed at defensive driving.

Use these tips to help make a safer road for all of us out there. And always remember, whatever else you do when you drive, always buckle up.