Accidents can happen to anyone and are often unavoidable. Regardless of where you live or how long you’ve been driving, you can’t always account for the actions of other drivers on the road. While defensive driving classes can help improve driving abilities, keeping a watchful eye on your surroundings at all times can help significantly reduce your chances of getting hit by another driver.
Some of the most common types of car accidents can be avoided by abiding by the following tips:
1. Parked Car Collision
Hitting a parked car happens more often in busy cities than anywhere else. Avoid hitting someone else’s car by checking your surroundings prior to sitting in the driver’s seat, and then checking your mirrors before pulling out of a spot. If possible, try to find an area that isn’t as busy to park your vehicle. If you’re worried about what the other car might do when they leave, allow ample space on both sides for them to pull out.
A safe solution is to consider parking your car farther away and walking to your destination. Doing so could save you the headache of dealing with body damage.
2. Rear-End Collisions
Rear-end collisions normally occur in traffic or on surface streets when drivers aren’t paying attention to the road. As traffic slows to a stop, regardless of the reason, the at-fault driver will approach the vehicle going too fast to slow down, causing them to hit the back of the vehicle. These types of accidents can cause a significant amount of damage, both to the individual and to the vehicle, depending on how fast the driver was going.
The best way to avoid a rear-end collision is to always pay attention to the road ahead of you. Leave enough space between yourself and the car in front of you when driving (normally about three car lengths) and when stopped (normally about ten feet). This will help you avoid being the at-fault driver in a rear-end collision and will help minimize the amount of damage done to the front of your vehicle should someone hit you from behind.
- Side Impact Crashes
Side impact collisions occur when one driver hits the side of another driver’s vehicle. Depending on the speed of the collision, a significant amount of personal and property damage can be done. These types of accidents account for nearly 27 percent of traffic-related deaths nationwide, so it’s important to be as safe as possible.
The best way to avoid side impact crashes is to pay attention to your surroundings, especially when making left and right turns at intersections and driving across a busy street after coming to a stop at a stop sign. If necessary, yield to other drivers who are already coming towards you, even if they don’t have the right-of-way.
While car accidents do occur on a regular basis, drivers who are aware of their surroundings and have taken the necessary precautions to protect themselves and their family can significantly reduce their chances of being involved in one. Defensive driving and reduction of distractions will help keep your eyes and mind on the road.