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Defensive driving tips

With so many distracted motorists in Minnesota and around the country, defensive driving is more important than ever. Defensive driving means planning ahead and taking precautions before dangerous situations arise. That way, if you do suddenly encounter a hazard on the road, you will be better prepared to take decisive actions.

Always be aware of your surroundings

While driving, you should constantly be scanning your surroundings and checking your mirrors so that you don’t get surprised by a reckless driver. Intersections are especially hazardous areas that require vigilance. So often, drivers that have been involved in motor vehicle collisions say that a car just “came out of nowhere.” If you’re aware of your surroundings, though, you might spot a red light runner before getting T-boned.

Brake early and keep safe following distances

It’s always important to maintain a safe following distance with the car ahead of you. However, you can’t always predict that the cars behind you will do the same. If you’re coming up to a red light or a turn, it’s better to gradually apply your brake early than come to a sudden stop or make a quick turn. This way, the car behind you will have some warning that they should also slow down.

Keep distractions to a minimum

With navigation built into infotainment systems, it can be hard to completely eliminate all distractions while driving. However, using a digital device that isn’t necessary for your drive should be avoided. Avoiding distracted driving may also mean keeping snacks out of reach and telling passengers you can’t answer all of their questions until the car is stopped.

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