The open road has always held an allure for travelers even in times of antiquity, when old game trails were the only paths humans trekked across. But in today’s world, with our interconnected highways and byways, this has made travel into an entirely different experience.
Even in times long since passed, there were often dangers to consider when out on the road. And today is no different. However, the dangers we face today often come in the form of other motorists traveling alongside us.
Staying safe on the road is everyone’s responsibility. However, many motorists don’t take road safety as seriously as others. And unfortunately, this often results in fatal collisions and car accidents that can cause serious harm.
By following a few simple rules, you can stay safe on the road even while traveling alongside the most reckless drivers. And in the following, we’ll explore a few essential tips for staying safe on your next road trip in 2022.
Be Aware of Distractions
Today, motorists have more distractions in their vehicles than ever before. With all of the buttons, features, and navigation systems running in modern vehicles, it’s a task just to keep your eyes on the road.
Smartphones require attention in order to type and send messages. And, today texting has become the preferred method of communication. The National Safety Council reports that nearly 390,000 injuries occur each year from texting and driving on U.S. roads. In fact, in 2019, over 3,000 people were killed due to distracted driving in the United States.
With this in mind, having car insurance is critical in case you find yourself blindsided by a distracted driver and need to foot the bill for repairs.
To put it plainly, paying attention to the road, and to other drivers, and driving defensively are your best preventive measures against getting into an accident. But, if any of the aforementioned fails, having insurance is the best way to protect you financially.
Keeping Vigilant on the Road
You don’t have to look too hard to spot a distracted driver on the road today. As mentioned, smartphones cause drivers to become distracted all too often. But if you know how to recognize the signs of distracted driving, you can keep yourself safe while out on the road.
A few common signs of distracted driving are as follows:
- Abrupt swerving
- Lane changes without signaling
- Riding the shoulder or median
- Riding down the center of the road
- Frequent braking
- Not maintaining a steady speed
- Riding too close to other motorists
- Visibly seeing a driver’s head down
Along with being able to spot these tell-tale signs of distracted driving, you should also practice a few commonplace rules for keeping yourself safe. And by allowing sufficient space between yourself and other motorists is often the best defense.
For example, keeping at least three car lengths of distance (or more) in front of you and another vehicle is always a best practice. Additionally, always using your signals, checking lanes and mirrors before lane changes, and being conscious of other drivers will help to keep you safe on the road so you can make it to your destination and enjoy your road trip.
In the Event of an Accident
The most important thing to remember in the event of an automobile accident is to remain calm, and call the local authorities immediately. This will be your first step of defense if you are struck by a motorist and need to file a claim for compensation with an attorney.
After contacting the authorities, ensure that you ask for medical attention even if you appear to feel fine. This is because some injuries (such as whiplash) can take several days to manifest. And having immediate medical attention will give you the documents you’ll need if you have to file a claim or pay for costly medical services.
After you’ve sought medical attention, it’s the time to exchange information with the other motorist, and contact your insurance company to report the accident. Your insurance company should then walk you through the appropriate steps for filing a claim if necessary.
Taking a road trip can be a great way to experience the joy of travel as you watch the scenery change and pass by. But doing so requires keeping your own personal safety (and the safety of others) in mind. And by following these essential tips, you’ll be able to enjoy your trip and make it back home safely.