RUSH HOUR! IT’S MORE THAN AN HOUR
Did you know… One in every four car accidents happens during rush hour traffic. Between the volume of cars on the road, people rushing to get to and from work, and the slow movement of traffic increasing distracted driving, rush hour can be a very dangerous time to drive.
Rush hour is an incredibly stressful time. In the morning, people are anxious to get to work on time so they don’t jeopardize their jobs, and at night, they are in a rush to get home away from the stress of the day and may be driving fatigued.
This heightened level of driving anxiety, coupled with the increased volume of vehicles on the road, can create high tensions that can often lead to road rage.
Not to mention, people are more distracted while driving than ever before. They are worrying about the events of their day, they are often very tired, and may even be eating while driving, talking on the phone, or texting, so they are not as alert as they should be which increases the risks to other drivers on the road.
How To Drive Safely During Rush Hour
Start by choosing a vehicle with a high safety rating.
That way if you do get into an accident, then you will sustain less injury.
Always maintain your vehicle.
If your brakes are not functioning properly or you cannot accelerate quickly, you are more likely to get into an accident during your commute.
Take a safe route.
Perhaps there’s a very dangerous intersection on the way or a confusing interstate merging lane where there are always accidents. If possible, plan your route so that you only take safe roads.
Never get distracted.
It’s easy to get bored during stop and go traffic, do not use your time to check your phone or groom yourself. Always keep your mind focused on driving. Distracted driving is incredibly risky, especially during rush hour where a few seconds can make a difference.
Be mindful of other drivers.
Even when another driver is doing something risky, you may want to yield the right of way to avoid an accident. Also give yourself adequate braking distance between you and the car in front of you. This will prevent pileups in case you get rear-ended.
Be aware of your route and try to get into the lane you will exit as soon as possible.
If you have a long stretch on a three-lane highway, stay in the middle lane. The middle lane is the safest lane because it has less stopping than the right and is not typically used for passing like the left lane. Lane shifts are often a major cause of accidents during rush hour.
Be prepared for the sun.
The sun is low during rush hour times and can reduce your visibility. Bring sunglasses and keep your visor down when you can to block the sun so that you do not end up in an accident because of sun blindness.
Be prepared for condensation.
There are dramatic temperature changes in the mornings which can create condensation. Condensation can also block or your reduce visibility. Make sure your defrost works well and that your windshields are free of any condensation before driving.
Check your mirrors.
Make sure your rearview and side mirrors are positioned correctly to give you the best possible view.
Be very aware of “blind spots.
Proceed cautiously when in another driver’s blind spot and always check yours before merging.
Always use your turn signals.
This basic safety measure will help other drivers understand your intentions. Besides, not using your signal is just plain bad driving manners!
Never engage in aggressive driving.
Aggressive driving causes 4% of all fatal car accidents. No matter how frustrated or angry you are, it is not worth the risk.
Rush hour can be a very dangerous time to drive. It is important to stay calm and drive defensively to avoid accidents.
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