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Driver Behavior: The Secrets Behind Being a Responsible Driver

Driver Behavior: The Secrets Behind Being a Responsible Driver
In a CNBC report, the National Safety Council (NSC) reported that in 2016 there were 40,327 fatal motor vehicle crashes, and in 2017 that number dropped by about 1% to 40,100. While even a tiny improvement to the figure is good, it’s not enough to offset the now alarming amount of road accidents that happen annually in the US.

NSC CEO Deborah Hersman says that this has a lot to do with on-board distractions, “We know it’s happening even though distracted driving data is hard to come by… police reports on accidents don’t often report it if the driver was distracted and in many cases, people don’t self-report themselves.”

Avoid All Distractions

Not being 100% focused on the task of driving and the road ahead is estimated to be the number one cause of car accidents in the US. We at Pedal and Pumps have already touched on the dangers of distracted driving before.

When you’re distracted on the road, you have less time to react to sudden obstacles or to the movement of the other vehicles around you. That’s why distracted driving usually leads to swerving at dangerous speeds. For instance, if you’re distracted by a notification on your phone, or reaching for something in your car, you could slightly drift to one direction without you knowing it. Once you refocus on the road, your natural reaction will be to jerk the steering wheel back to position. This can result in a number of unfavorable consequences.

Fatigue is Fatal

Over-driving and fatigue can tremendously decrease your ability to focus on the road. A sleepy and/or clouded mind makes for the worst drivers – a fact that hasn’t escaped the notice of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association (FMSCA). Currently, the FMSCA with the Department of Transportation is implementing an ELD Mandate. This mandate requires trucks in the commercial transportation industry to be outfitted with Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs). ELDs primarily monitor a truck drivers’ Hours of Service (HoS), creating an accurate record of their time on the road. The FMSCA hopes that this measure will be enough to significantly decrease motor vehicle accidents, at least in terms of large commercial delivery trucks.

Apart from monitoring hours of service, these onboard ELDs have other helpful features to prevent over-driving and fatigue. The devices will warn drivers when they’re about to commit a traffic violation. Their ELD software is also rigged to keep pace with changing government regulations to ensure that drivers are always operating lawfully, and most importantly, safely. While there is no law requiring personal drivers to record their trips, those on the road should take driving while fatigued as seriously as the government is.

Proper Car Maintenance Saves Lives

The state of your vehicle also directly contributes to your ability to avoid accidents. This means that drivers should know what dashboard warning lights are, and regularly checking the filters to ensures the car runs smoothly at all times. These are just some of the few car maintenance tips that can decrease your risk of being involved in an accident.

Being a responsible driver is all about adopting behaviors to protect yourself as well as other people on the road. If everyone does their part to be responsible, maybe then we’ll see a decrease in overall accident numbers.

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