The driving task requires a level of positive attitude. You must use good manners if you want to get along with other drivers on the road. Just because you are cut off from other drivers by walls of steel and glass is no reason to treat them any differently than if you were to meet them at a party. Driving while angry, upset, stressed out, and certainly when ill, will increase the odds of having an accident by a factor of 10. In addition, your reaction time will be reduced. Before you get into behind the wheel of any vehicle ask yourself a couple of questions;
“Am I feeling physically well enough to drive?”
Instances where you are feeling under the weather are considered poor situations to drive in. Something as simple as a sneeze can cause a traffic accident. What if you become so ill that you have an emergency need to do so? Will you be able to do so quickly? Moreover, some symptoms can be indicative of an underlying condition. Getting behind the wheel of a vehicle involves being honest with yourself when you are incapable of the driving task. When you are feeling unwell, consider asking a friend or family member to drive instead.
“Am I feeling emotionally well enough to drive?”
Heightened emotional states are not appropriate for the driving task. Stress, anger, fear, joy and depression are some examples of strong emotions that can interfere with your ability to think and reason while driving. They can affect your alertness, concentration and decision-making. It is always wise to postpone driving when you are faced with these types of emotions.
“Am I mentally well enough to drive?”
Your driving ability may also be weakened when you are feeling tired or sleepy. They can cause blurred and/or double vision, loss of depth perception and falling asleep at the wheel. When feeling emotionally unstable or tired and sleepy, the solution is to stop in a safe place and rest or, if possible, change drivers.
You can find more useful tips like these by taking a defensive driving course online! If you or someone you know needs to take a driver improvement course for a traffic citation, insurance discount, or just wants a refresher regarding defensive driving, we highly recommend Cheap Easy Fast Online Defensive Driving. The course is entirely free to try, and it’s approved by all California courts. They also operate online and video courses in other states. Check their website to see if your state is included. Until next time, keep your eyes on the road!