Everyone knows – or should – that driving safely is a serious business and not something to be taken lightly or shirked. Driving safety advice can be neatly split into general tips for safe driving and how to respond to hazards of the road as they arise. Moreover, when it comes to hazards of the road, these can be numerous and diverse.
It would be impossible to countall the things which could potentially go wrongbecause this simply depends on too many factors. Where you are driving will determine the hazards; the weather conditions outside also have an influence and so too does whether you are driving at night or during the day.
Highway safety experts
Valtir say that you should also remember that some hazards apply to specific types of roads and locations.Nobody is putting up super strong highway cablebarrierson country roads, and nor are there many black ice warning signs in New Mexico.
Most Common Road Hazards
So, what are the most common road hazards? Well, as mentioned, they can depend upon very many factors. Nevertheless, to make things a bit simpler, they can also be split into three neat categories.
Those hazards pertaining to environmental factors (for example, the weather), those hazards which are down to road features such as bends or highway lanes, and those which arise on account of other road users, like cyclists or pedestrians. Let us look at the hazards of each of these categories in turn – and what to do about them.
You can be dazzled by the sun at any time of year – that’s the first thing to remember. In fact, the low winter sun can even be worse for reducing visibility. Therefore, always have a pair of antiglare sunglasses in the glove box.
This can be visible ice which arises on account of compacted snow or black ice, which is nearinvisible, especially at night. When there’s risk of ice, you need to drive slower, keep more of a distance, and take corners carefully.
Heavy rain reduces grip on the road and reduces your visibility. The same driving tips for ice apply here, and make sure that your windscreen wipers are in good working order.
Physical Road Hazards
Bends are a feature of all roads.However, depending on how tight and how “blind” they are, they can be a real hazard too. When tackling those tight bends, do so as wide and as slowly as possible.
Potholes present two dangers to drivers. Hitting one can damage your vehicle and cause it to lose control while swerving to avoid one can send your car off skidding.
Other Road Users
Pedestrians and Cyclists
Cyclists share the road with you, but they need to do so in a certain way. That said, you also have your responsibilities to them, most importantly to allow them plenty of room. Pedestrians are usually indicatedby the things like crossings. Vigilance and careful driving are the only way to deal with this.
Out on the highway, heavy traffic can mean a lot of overtaking and stopping/starting, which can be perilous for some inexperienced drivers. In urban centers, it can mean busy intersections and cars coming out of nowhere. As always, vigilance is essential but so too is following road signage and traffic lights.
This is a good run down of the most common hazards on the roads today There are many more than this but covering these bases will already take you a long way to becoming a safe driver.