By: Mark Goldberg
I couldn’t believe it (well, then again nothing is that surprising these days) – the guy in the car ahead of me was shaving. It was early morning as we drove on a narrow two-lane road. He swerved numerous times as he continued grooming behind the wheel. It could have ended badly since there were school buses and elementary school children on the side of the road; luckily nobody was hit or hurt. The sad part is that he was oblivious to how dangerous his antics were.
Then, on a recent trip to visit our daughter, my wife and I witnessed drivers passing on the far right on the interstate, wildly veering across three lanes and then back to the left lane. Others were tailgating at such a high speed that there was no way they would avoid slamming into the car ahead if traffic suddenly came to a stop.
We’ve all seen it; people with angry faces, often gesturing, as the careen through our thoroughfares as if they were the only one who mattered. As we encounter the growing number of distracted and aggressive drivers, it got me thinking about how we all need to be hyper-aware and drive with extra precaution.
So, what can you do?
- Stay out of the left lane unless you are passing
- Don’t challenge them by speeding up or trying to block them
- Follow the speed limit
- Avoid eye contact
- Report them to authorities providing vehicle description, license plate number, location and direction of travel
Gesturing back or making eye contact can often lead to road rage.
And here are some defensive driving tips that can help you avoid confrontations with aggressive drivers:
- Keep scanning the area ahead and behind you
- Drive with both hands on the wheel to better respond to dangers
- Wear your seatbelt
- Slow down in bad weather
- Have an escape plan
- Don’t follow too close
- Avoid driving when tired or drowsy
Experts recommend that you take a defensive driving course to learn these techniques; besides it can also qualify you for a discount on your auto insurance.
California Casualty is dedicated to preventing this type of driving behavior. That’s why we are proud to be a major sponsor of Impact Teen Drivers, a nonprofit formed with the law enforcement and education groups that uses peer-to-peer tactics to educate teen and young adults about the dangers of distracted and reckless driving. Learn more at http://www.calcas.com/web/ccmc/impact-teen-drivers.
Before you hit the road, make sure you have adequate protection in case you encounter a distracted or aggressive driver. Call a California Casualty advisor today for an auto policy review or comparison at 1.800.800.9410 or visit www.calcas.com.
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