Missouri Defensive Driving Tips and Techniques

Whether it is summer, fall, winter, or spring, car collisions are 100% preventable. As seasons and weather conditions altar, many motorists adjust the way they drive without even realizing it. According to Rae Tyson of the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) and UC Berleley's traffic center, weather is a significant contributing factor to fatal crashes each year. "If you're on an icy, slippery road and it's a posted speed limit of 55, if you're going 40, you may be going too fast." (Rae Tyson) So how do we avoid these fatalities? By taking a Missouri defensive driving program to teach your how to become a defensive driver and by executing your knowledge no matter what weather condition you are driving in. Below are a list of defensive driving tips and defensive driving techniques for the winter season and for everyday driving.

Winter Tips

According to IcyRoadSafety.com, there were 10 Deaths within a three day time frame, including two 4-fatality crashes on December 26th and 27th for the 2009 and 2010 season. Here are some winter tips to help you avoid being a statistic:

Everything Driving Tips

  1. Adjust your speed and following distance to make sure it is suitable for the current driving conditions.
  2. Make sure to keep all windows, mirrors and lights clean, while also keeping your lights on at all times.
  3. Keep your gas tank at least half full at all times.
  4. If you feel as if you are uncomfortable driving, if the conditions worsen, or you feel as if you can't see, pull off the road and park in a safe location until you feel safe returning to the road.
  5. Stock your car with an emergency preparedness kit. This should include items such as but not limited to:
    • Flashlight
    • Extra batteries
    • Blankets and/or sleeping bags
    • Nonperishable food items/water
    • Tools
    • Small shovel
    • Jumper cables
    • Extra clothing
    • First-aid kit
  6. Prepare your vehicle to drive through the snow. Make sure you have proper tires and snow chains as well as a properly working battery, exhaust systems, etc. You may want to have a licensed mechanic check your car before the winter season arrives.

Remember: driving is MOST dangerous when temperatures are near 32 Degrees Fahrenheit (or freezing). If temperatures drop near this cold and fog is in the vicinity, heavy icing is likely to occur.

Everyday Driving Tips

Everyday Driving Tips

Although motorists tend to pay extra attention to the roadways when the weather conditions are compromised, you should always drive defensively, even if the sun is out.

  1. Don't speed. According to the Missouri Department of Transportation, the Missouri Statistical Analysis Center, and the Missouri State Highway Patrol, one person was killed or injured every 46.1 minutes in 2011 for Accidents related to speed.
  2. Always wear your seat belt. Not only is this a law in Missouri, but studies have shown that by using your seatbelt, you reduce your chances of being injured or killed in an accident.
  3. Expect the unexpected. We're only human and that doesn't exclude us when we are behind the wheel. Drivers make mistakes so be ready to react as necessary.
  4. Do NOT drink and drive. In 2011, 208 People were killed and 3,625 more were injured in crashes where drinking was involved.
  5. Sit with a proper posture. Always keep your back straight, upright, and relaxed against your seat. Also, make sure you are close enough to reach the pedals easily and keep both your feet within reach of the floor controls.
  6. Make sure to leave enough space between you and the driver in front of you. Not only is tailgating agitating for other drivers on the road, it is also better to keep a safe following distance. Keeping a safe following distance will allow you to stop or turn to avoid collision. This will also help you from rear-ending another vehicle on the roadways.
  7. Always signal your intentions. Blinkers are great tools! Make sure you use your signal when looking to change lanes, turn left, right, are merging into traffic, or are going to park. By getting into the habit of using your turn signal, you can help avoid common accidents and crashes.

There are many more defensive driving tips and defensive driving techniques. If you would like to learn more of these helpful defensive driving techniques and tips, be sure to register in our Missouri defensive driving course online. Our Missouri defensive driving program will teach you how to avoid accidents and ways to react in multiple real-life situations. Just click the button below and you will be taken right to our online registration. Don't miss out on what could help save your life!

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