How To Fix Bad Driving Habits in 2024
No matter how long you've been driving, it's very easy to become complacent on the road. For example, many drivers become comfortable using cell phones behind the wheel or speeding. Some even become confident in their ability to drive impaired or drowsy. But these are all bad driving habits that could result in a car accident when you least expect it.
If you've found yourself engaging in any of these habits, you're not alone. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety conducted a survey of 2,499 drivers and released the results in its 2022 Traffic Safety Culture Index. Many participants admitted to engaging in bad driving habits, including:
- Speeding - 22.7%
- Distracted and aggressive driving - 17.3%
- Impaired driving - 1.3%
- All of the above risky driving habits - 2.4%
Tips on how to fix bad driving habits
The first step is acknowledging bad driving habits and actively avoiding them. Arnie Kinsler, a AAA driving instructor, encourages motorists to brush up on their driving skills by taking AAA's Defensive Driving Course. Below are some of the most common bad driving habits and tips on how to fix them.
Any kind of distraction behind the wheel is dangerous, whether it's manual, visual, or cognitive. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 3,522 traffic fatalities across the U.S. in 2021 were linked to distracted driving.
A crash caused by distraction can happen within seconds, no matter how confident you are in your ability to multitask behind the wheel. To fix this habit, traffic safety specialist Barbara Ward urges drivers to put their phones in "do not disturb" mode. She also suggests keeping your cell phone out of reach so you don't feel inclined to use it while driving.
Using alcohol and drugs often leads to impaired judgment, reduced reaction time, and poor coordination. Drivers who get behind the wheel while impaired put themselves, their passengers, and other road users in danger. According to the NHTSA, drunk driving led to 13,384 traffic fatalities across the U.S. in 2021.
The most effective way to avoid this risk is not driving impaired. If you need transportation, use a rideshare service like Lyft or Uber or call a taxi. You can also designate a sober driver ahead of time. Otherwise, consider spending the night at a friend or relative's house or walking to and from your destination (if you're close enough).
Avoid driving while drowsy
Like impaired driving, drowsy driving can slow your reaction time and judgment. Additionally, it reduces your ability to concentrate and make smart decisions while driving. The NHTSA reports that 684 road deaths in 2021 were caused by drowsy driving.
The best way to avoid drowsy driving is to get adequate sleep before hitting the road. Also, consider taking a break every two hours or 100 miles to allow yourself time to recharge. If your eyelids begin to get heavy, find a safe spot to pull over immediately. Take a short nap before continuing driving, or have an alert passenger take over.
Travel at a safe and reasonable speed
Remember, speed limits are not suggestions. They're traffic rules that every driver should follow. Speeding reduces the time and distance needed to stop or react to roadway hazards. Plus, the faster the speed, the more serious the damage and injuries are when a car accident occurs.
According to the NHTSA, the U.S. saw 12,330 traffic fatalities in 2021 due to speeding. To break this habit, allow yourself plenty of time to reach your destination and avoid engaging in aggressive driving. If you encounter an aggressive driver, ignore them and don't make eye contact. If you're being followed or threatened, contact the police and get to the nearest police station immediately.
Seeking legal help after a Las Vegas car accident
Fixing bad driving habits is a major step toward reducing your chances of being injured in a collision. However, the risk still exists. You can't control or predict the actions of other drivers who choose to engage in these dangerous habits. If you're hurt in a crash as a result, you have the right to seek fair and full compensation for your losses. At Lasso Injury Law LLC, we can help you fight for the justice and financial compensation you deserve.
Attorney Al Lasso has more than two decades of experience fighting for the rights of injured motorists throughout the Las Vegas area. He brings strong investigative and negotiation skills to the table and will fight to recover every dollar you're eligible for in compensation. Find out how Lasso Injury Law can help you by contacting us for a free consultation.