Defensive driving was a term that started in the 1960’s. The term quickly caught on and to most drivers it means “watch out for and avoid the unsafe habits and bad attitudes of other drivers”. The problem of aggressive driving appears to be increasing in seriousness. According to the surveys and studies done approximately 65 % of today’s drivers will see unsafe or aggressive driving on a daily commute or trip. These bad habits or attitudes include: Speeding, running red lights and stop signs, weaving in and out of traffic, flashing their lights, blowing there horns unnecessarily, driving without seat belts, tailgating, facial or hand gestures, passing on the right, prevent passing by a faster car, driving while sleepy or impaired, pulling out in front of you, and distracted driving. Unfortunately half of the drivers surveyed admitted to responding to bad driving by being aggressive themselves. This is unacceptable and is likely to escalate to road rage or worse.
Defensive driving starts as soon as you click on your seat belt after you get in your car. This will keep you in the car in case of an accident. It also keeps you behind the wheel to be in position to make corrections or maneuvers to avoid bad drivers. It also keeps you properly placed for Airbags to be effective. Next is to adjust your rear view and side view mirrors to see problems coming from behind. Familiarize yourself with the car if it is not your normal ride. Make sure your seat is adjusted properly for maximum visibility and control. Checking 15-20 seconds ahead of your current location is also highly recommended as this will give you more time to avoid possible problems. Keeping your mind clear and paying attention to the job at hand is mandatory. Eliminate anything distracting. Do not react to the stupidity of other drivers unless it is to avoid them. You will get there just as soon as they do and without the high risks involved. The main difference between a safe driver and aggressive driver is their regard for safety. An aggressive driver has no regard for safety to themselves or others. In most states you can report them to local or State Police calling numbers posted on the highways. Keeping your car in proper repair including brakes, turn signals, mirrors, headlights, tires, and wipers is also key to you not making moves to upset other drivers. Follow the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Good Luck out there and drive defensively. Always Stay Calm, Collected, and Focused!!