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How to drive safely as a student

Being a new driver is great for some, but nerve wracking for others

Posted by Craig Daykin | May 31, 2017 | Primary

How to drive safely as a student

Being a new driver is great for some, but nerve wracking for others. Even after you have passed your tests and earned your licence, there is so much more that you need to learn in order to stay safe on the road. If you want to keep safe, here are a few tips to keep in mind the next time you get behind the wheel. 

Get rid of distractions

While this is one of the first things that you learn when learning to drive, many students have the tendency to get carried away, especially when they have their friends in the car. One of the biggest distractions that you might have guessed is your mobile phone. While driving, your phone should be turned off and put away – or at least keep your phone out of reach. Far too many accidents happen on the roads due to drivers answering messages or checking road maps on their phone. Most calls and texts probably aren’t urgent enough to warrant answering them while you are driving. If you do need to take a call or check your phone you should first find a safe place to pull over and stop before you take it out and start answering your messages. 

Get a dash cam/ black box

For student drivers and young drivers, making claims and getting insured can be a bit complicated and prices can go up and down all over the board. That’s why, to prove your driving ability and to make you more aware of the way you drive, you might want to consider investing in a dash cam or a black box. A black box will track your performance to show insurers that you are a responsible driver while a dash cam can be used as evidence if you get into an accident. Just because you’re young and inexperienced at driving, that doesn’t mean that you should get the short end of the stick when you’re involved in an accident. Most legal advice services for road traffic accident claims would also recommend a dash cam in case you get caught in a ‘crash for cash’ scam or an accident that wasn’t your fault. 

Learn to be a defensive driver

No matter how safe a driver you think you are, you can never be too cautious. When you’re out on the road it’s you against the world and the mistakes of another driver could spell bad news for you, even if you were doing everything you were supposed to. That’s where lessons in defensive driving come in handy. The main principle of defensive driving is to take a few extra precautions while driving to keep yourself safe and avoid an accident. This involves being more wary of other drivers and steering clear of potentially dangerous situations. Be observant, cautious, and don’t let yourself be distracted. 

Consider the weather

One mistake that many young drivers make is not considering the weather before they hit the road. Different weather conditions require different driving styles and you can never be too cautious when there is potential danger involved. When the roads are wet and slippery, keep your speed a little bit slower than normal and leave a good amount of space between yourself and other cars. When conditions are foggy, don’t forget to turn on your headlights (not bright), slow down and be on the lookout at other headlights in the fog.

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