Bethesda Car Accident Lawyers Ask You: What Do You Do To Put Yourself At Risk While Driving?
As Bethesda auto accident attorneys, we focus a lot on the negligence of other drivers causing accidents that harm and injure you and your loved ones. What we do not discuss much on this website are the things that you do — maybe every day — that put you at risk.
When you were 16 years old and first learning to drive, you probably felt the weight of the large responsibility that was on your shoulders every time you got behind the wheel. You probably took every precaution and did everything “by the book” in order to become the best driver you could be. As you got older and became a more experienced driver, however, the activity that once felt intimidating and overwhelming became routine, and you slowly began relaxing while you drove.
Now, as you expertly navigate the Beltway while drinking a coffee and talking on the phone, you probably feel confident in your driving abilities. Unfortunately, as you gain confidence, you often lose the air of caution that you once had and start to multitask while driving. Below are some of the most common distractions and bad habits that are behind many fender-benders and accidents that we see in the D.C. area:
- Speeding excessively: Most of us (even Washington, D.C., car accident lawyers) probably go five or even ten miles per hour over the speed limit while keeping up with traffic. When you begin going much faster than the cars around you, however, your reaction and stopping time greatly decrease, causing problems for everyone on the road.
- Talking: Whether you are using a hands-free device or talking to other passengers in the car, when your focus turns from the road to the conversation, you risk missing the tiny important details — like brake lights a few cars ahead or a signaling car — that require your attention.
- Finding your way: The technology that exists to help us navigate the roads is amazing, but when you are focusing on your GPS or arguing with Siri, you may not be in tune with the traffic around you.
- Improper signal use: Everyone forgets to signal occasionally, but when you are regularly merging and changing lanes without signaling, the cars around you are unaware of your intentions.
While driving safely is never insurance enough to prevent the dangerous actions of other negligent drivers, it does help you drive defensively to avoid making one driver’s mistake your own accident. Use the same caution and care you used when you were younger, and increase your odds of getting from point A to point B safely.
When safe driving is not enough and you are injured, you are not out of luck. Call the D.C., Maryland, and Northern Virginia car accident attorneys at Lewis & Tompkins today for a free consultation. Discuss your case with a lawyer now at 202-296-0666.