As the old adage goes, “human error” is inevitable behind the wheel. It’s estimated that human error accounts for 99 percent of all traffic accidents. But most of us keep making the same mistakes on the road without even realizing we have a problem.
People often make the same mistakes while driving, either because they are not paying attention or because they don’t care about the other cars on the road.
That’s why researchers and developers are putting so much effort into developing autonomous vehicles that can drive themselves. Here is a list of the most common mistakes that human drivers consistently make while behind the wheel.
Not Adjusting the Mirrors
Mirrors that aid in reverse and side vision are not for show. They’re crucial tools that let you see what’s happening behind and to the sides of your car. It’s crucial that you check the positioning of your car’s mirrors regularly.
However, the vast majority of drivers go about their business with improperly positioned and adjusted mirrors. The inability to see vehicles approaching from behind increases the risk of collisions. Accidents are more likely to occur when drivers have improperly positioned their side mirrors, which prevents them from seeing oncoming traffic when changing lanes.
There is always going to be a “blind spot” in side mirrors, but the problem gets much worse when drivers are forced to look at their own door handles instead of the vehicles traveling next to them because the mirror is adjusted incorrectly.
Whenever you get into a new car, it’s a good idea to take a few seconds to make sure the mirrors are set up properly. Turn the side mirrors so that you can’t see your own vehicle in them, and the blind spot will disappear almost entirely.
The temptation to “floor it” when you’re late is real, and it’s one of the most common driving mistakes. On the other hand, breaking the speed limit is both hazardous and unlawful, and, as a renowned San Francisco car accident attorney notes, human factors are among the most prevalent causes of such accidents.
One of the leading causes of car accidents is speeding, which is also a surefire way to get a hefty fine. Driving too fast eliminates your safety margin for error in the event of an emergency stop. In bad weather or at night, these risks increase significantly. Staying within the posted speed limit is essential for accident avoidance.
If you think you might be late, it’s best to plan ahead and let people know so you can take your time and get there safely. If this is a common occurrence, try getting up and out of the house earlier.
Taking Your Eyes off the Road
Keep your focus solely on the road ahead of you at all times. There are cars going in all directions, and you need to pay attention to where you are going and what they are doing.
Looking at a phone or reaching for something in the glove box are just two examples of the many common distractions that take drivers’ eyes off the road and increase the risk of an accident.
Pull over to the side of the road when it is safe to do so and perform the necessary action if you need to take your hand off the wheel to grab something other than the gear stick or stick shift.
Incorrect Seat Belt Positioning
If the seat belt is not set up correctly, even small accidents or sudden stops can cause serious injuries, especially to children. The top strap should cross over the chest and sit in the hollow of the collarbone for a snug fit.
The lower strap needs to be worn snugly, right over the pelvic bones. Positioning the belt incorrectly, such as above the stomach or close to the neck, can be extremely dangerous because the pressure of the belt on these soft areas could cause serious internal injuries in the event of an accident or sudden braking.
Driving Too Slowly
Even though this is the opposite of the mistake we talked about before, it shouldn’t be ignored. Most people who drive too slowly don’t realize they’re doing it.
However, you are affecting the flow of traffic when you travel much slower than the posted limit. This raises the likelihood that drivers will engage in risky behaviors like passing on the right and tailgating.
These behaviors are risky and may cause accidents. Never get in the way of moving traffic!
How many of these driving errors rang a bell with your own driving habits? Now is the best time to start changing your bad habits.
You can avoid getting tickets and fines, and you can keep the peace on the road. You’ll learn how to protect not only yourself but those around you as well.