This week, December 1st – 7th, is National Safe Driving Week, a campaign put on by the National Safety Council since 1950. Safe driving should be practiced year round, but especially in winter when dangers on the road escalate.
For Safe Driving Week, here are some reminders for safe driving to keep you and your family safe on the road.
1. Get Your Car Winter Ready
Getting proper winter tires is a good start to winterizing your vehicle. They should however, remain maintained. Check the traction of the treads, and air pressure regularly. You should also replace your windshield wipers for the winter months, and switch to antifreeze washer fluid. In your car, you should always have an ice scraper, snow brush, extra antifreeze solution, and a safety kit containing anything you may need if you get stuck this winter.
Being prepared for the winter is important, but it does no good if you don’t take the extra precautions when driving on snow, ice, and slush. Slow down, remain alert, and drive cautiously in the coming winter months.
2. Share the Road
Sharing the road means respecting all vehicles. Make sure to follow the rules of the road by stopping at every stop sign, and red light. Leave drivers a respectful amount of space, and follow the posted speed limit.
In the warmer months, it is important to share the road with motorcyclists, and cyclists, but in the winter, even if there aren’t many cyclists on the road, there are still school buses, trucks, and plows. Give other vehicles lots of time and space to react if need be.
3. Never Drive Impaired
Driving under the influence is never a good idea. It is a serious crime that poses a significant threat to the public. Driving impaired can be driving while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or the combination of both.
If you plan on drinking, always have a plan home. Driving under the influence is never an option.
4. Never Drive Distracted
Taking your attention off the road, for even a few seconds is extremely dangerous to you, and everyone around you. Drivers need to be alert, and defensive to anything that may occur. Taking your eyes off the road for even 5 seconds, while driving 100km/h (average highway speed in Atlantic Canada) means you have traveled the entire length of a football field, without looking.
Distracted driving doesn’t just have to mean, driving using a cell phone. It can also mean, eating, programming a GPS, getting something from your bag, or dealing with your kids in the backseat. Distractions are all around, and sometimes unavoidable, but before doing anything that may take your attention off the road, think about the risks, and pull over.
5. Follow the Posted Speed Limit
The speed limits in Atlantic Canada is 100km/h on highways, and 50km/h in urban districts, unless otherwise indicated. By speeding up, it’s harder to regain control of the vehicle, and increases the chance of injuries if in an accident.
Just because the vehicles around you travel above the speed limit, doesn’t give you the right to. Follow the law, and travel below the maximum.
Cantini Law has over 35 years of experience advocating for clients who have suffered injuries following a motor vehicle accident. With 5 locations serving NS, NB, and PEI, contact Cantini Law for a free consultation at 1-800-606-2529.