Over the course of your driving career, it is easy to pick up one or two bad habits, and studies show that if you assimilate them at an early age it is often harder to stop. Also, the majority of drivers only continue to do bad habits because they aren’t aware that they’re bad. It is also not something most people want to admit, especially if you’ve been driving for over 5 years. You could be talking on the phone, eating and fixing your screaming kid’s hair while driving and still find it difficult to admit to yourself that you’re not the best driver.
Moreover, one or two bad habits does not necessarily make you a bad driver – it depends what you do and how frequently – but any bad habit, big or small, is worth cutting out. What’s more, when you add the extra responsibility of being a Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle driver, the small habits become much more dangerous.
We’ve put together a small list of things to avoid while on the road:
Firstly, it is notable that texting while driving increases the chances of an accident by 23% – that is a significant amount and makes it clear that this is a complete no-no. For the safety of you and your passengers, do not do this at any point. It is never worth the risk.
When your phone rings, ignore it. If there is a passenger with you then by all means allow them to answer the phone, but never answer yourself – again, it just isn’t worth the risk. If it is important, pull over safely to answer or call back.
Have breakfast at home to avoid eating in the car. This is and common habit to fall into, when faced with the choice between getting up 15 minutes earlier than usual and having breakfast in the car, it is easy to pick the latter. However, while driving it is important to maintain focus on what’s ahead of you, and not the pieces of toast balancing precariously on your dashboard. Furthermore, although it doesn’t feel like it in the morning, 15 minutes less sleep will not really have a huge impact on your energy throughout the day.
Ensure your children’s lunches are packed and they’re dressed for school before leaving the house – the danger of trying to fix a tie while driving is very clear.
Make sure your gadgets are sorted out beforehand. Make sure your GPS is set up and, for those of you who listen to music, the playlist is selected before driving to avoid any further distractions.
Lastly, use hands-free electronics with caution – speaking on the phone while driving is still a distraction even if both hands are on the wheel, and doubtless affects your level of concentration on the road.
Hopefully these tips help make clear what habits are worth avoiding, in order to make driving your WAV as safe and responsible as possible.
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Lewis Reed Group
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