Investing In Your Driver Safety: What Are The Essentials?

Friday, November 23, 2018

If you think that passing your driving test is the most difficult part of the whole process of getting on the road, you're about 75% right, but once you get over the mechanical issues, and get into the right head space, you'll have to start thinking very carefully about your own safety. It's not just about seat belts, bumpers, and defensive driving, but it's something that happens the more you get used to the roads. While the first year after you've passed your test is the prime time for accidents, in actual fact, it will take a few years for you to encounter the various types of drivers on the road, but also come to terms with your own abilities. Passing your test doesn't mean you are a perfect driver, and from a financial perspective, you need to invest in your own driver safety. How can we do this?

Picking The Appropriate Vehicle For Our Skills

The bind we are in when we start out our road journey relates to what we can get with our limited money. This usually means we invest in a second-hand car, or we spend a little bit more on something that's good quality. And we can spend quite a bit of money on the essentials, but it's far better for you to have some money stockpiled so you can get a good quality car. Because you're in this precarious position at the very beginning where are you may not have much help with regards to picking the right car, but also, the lack of experience means that you don't really know what you want yet, safety is paramount. This means that not only do we have to pick a car that is preferably not second-hand but be sure that the car we do get is appropriate for our skills. While most modern vehicles come equipped with numerous safety features, it can be more expensive. However, you can get a car on lease, so you have a vehicle that's of a high standard, and as modern as possible. And while you may be paying a bit more for this, you will reap the benefits, not just in terms of warranty on the vehicle, but it's easier to drive than an old car. The big problem we all have with regards to picking a car is that it needs to be cheap. Instead, we could sidestep this and pick an ex-demonstration model, or take a bit more time to find the right car. There is no rush, and after we’ve passed our test, the temptation can be to get on the road with any car. This isn't the best plan of action.

Equip The Vehicle

Driver safety is one of those things that we can talk about too much, but it's essential. The necessary equipment we need to have in our vehicle doesn't just relate to the maintenance of the car, such as a tire pressure gauge, jumper cables, or a spare tire, but it's also about the implements that make us safer on the road in general. It's a fact, but multiple types of car accidents are caused by distracted driving. These days, we are more susceptible to distractions, not just because there are so many gadgets in the modern vehicle, but the one thing we always carry about our person, our smartphone, means that, when we are flooring it down a speedy highway, and our phone buzzes, we can feel tempted to glance down to see who has text. We know at the back of our minds this is not sensible, and to offset this, one of the most necessary items of equipment we need in the vehicle isn't a phone holder, but it's an app that can stop us looking at our phones. There are plenty of apps out there- some that read out texts for you and others that disable your ability to text while driving. While we all know it's common sense, the temptation to text when we're on a quiet road can get the better of us. And if we ever get in an accident, which is more common than ever, we have to reduce these distractions where we can. In addition to this, dash cams are more popular now, as you can purchase an app that does this, and as the potential for accidents these days is much higher, you will need evidence if something happens.

The Learning Curve  

Defensive driving is something we can learn about online, but if we're after the tangible experience, a rather than heading on YouTube for a couple of video clips, we need to get out there with a professional. Depending on where you are in the world, there are additional courses that show you how to get more out of your driving ability. While a lot of this can be done with experience, many insurance companies provide a plug-in device that measures your ability to drive safely. The incentive of getting one of these is that it can reduce your insurance premium. And while you may find yourself at the mercy of frustrated dangerous drivers, we all know that they're not being particularly safe. It's a very precarious position. We can choose to follow the herd, especially for surrounded by dangerous drivers and turn into one ourselves over time, or we can stand our ground, and drive to the best of our ability.

When we’ve passed our driving test, the safety of ourselves and our passengers cannot be overestimated. The sheer excitement of being on the road can overtake any modicum of common sense. It's vital that we invest in our abilities to be safe, not just via the usual approaches, but also, taking the opportunity to address our skills, and improve on them when necessary. For many, the financial incentive through our insurance policy when we have so many years of no claims is enough, but there are other ways. When we’re starting out, we're looking for the cheapest options, because it's a shock to the system that we have to invest in something that potentially drains us of our money, but the importance of taking the time to look at our abilities and invest what we can is essential.

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