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Basics of Defensive Driving

Even when you follow all of the rules of the road and exercise an appropriate amount of caution, you can still wind up in an accident caused by another driver’s mistake. Fortunately, you can lessen the chance of an accident by practicing defensive driving, which the National Safety Council’s Defensive Driving Course defines as “driving to save lives, time and money, in spite of the conditions around you and the actions of others.”

One of the most important things to remember when driving defensively is to resist the urge to trust other drivers to do the right thing. Unfortunately, not all drivers obey traffic laws, more than a few may simply be distracted, so it’s essential to remain vigilant while behind the wheel. You should also be sure to leave plenty of space between your car and other vehicles on the road so you have more time to react if the car in front of you stops suddenly.

Another way to reduce the risk of crashes through defensive driving is to make sure you always have a way to get out of your lane if you need to. Avoid getting boxed in by trucks or other vehicles because that can make it impossible for you to escape an impending collision. It’s also important to avoid engaging in any activity that could take your attention off the road, such as texting, participating in intense conversations, adjusting the radio or looking for a lost item in the car.

Finally, driving defensively also involves communicating with the other drivers on the road and treating them with courtesy by obeying all laws yourself. Use your signals before you turn or change lanes. Yield to other drivers when necessary, and pay attention to the signals other drivers give you so you will know what they plan to do.

If you are involved in an accident in spite of driving defensively, a personal injury attorney with Goforth & Lilley can help you seek the compensation you deserve. Call our Lafayette office at 337-446-4239 or contact us online to arrange a free consultation.

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