With summer in full swing and so many more people out on the road we thought we should share some safe driving tips. Whether you have been driving for many years or you recently received your drivers permit, it is important to have safety be a priority before getting behind the wheel.
Did you know that distracted driving is the number one cause of accidents? There are many things that can factor into this including cell phones, kids, eating, reading, grooming, changing songs on the radio and using GPS. Of these, distractions, the use of a cell phone is by far responsible for the most accidents. Texting and driving is responsible for 1,600,000 accidents per year according to the National Safety Council. These accidents can range from minor fender benders to fatalities. For how this type of accident can affect your family, please check out this video:
In 2014 33% of all accident fatalities were attributed to speeding and it is the third leading cause for accidents according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Why do people speed? Most times they say they are late, they are not paying attention to how fast they are going or they think that they will not get caught! For the average trip across town you will probably only save a few minutes. Leave a little earlier to avoid putting yourself at risk!
Service your vehicle
Be sure to follow your manufacturer’s recommendations when it comes to all vehicle maintenance. Oil changes are important, but so are rotating your tires, keeping the proper inflation in your tires and replacing brakes. Not completing the required maintenance can cause your vehicle to malfunction and in turn account for an accident.
Always wear your seatbelt
With seat belt usage reaching 87% in 2014, it seems like this is an obvious driving tip. But for those who think that seatbelts are not that important, let’s look at some information. In 2014, 45% of all vehicle accident related deaths were chalked up partially to not wearing a seat belt. That is 6,889 lives that could have potentially been saved! Buckle up, in most states it’s the law!
Give yourself time to react
Here's some food for thought. At 55 mph, your vehicle is traveling at about 80 feet per second. Feet-per-second is determined by multiplying speed in miles-per-hour by 1.47 (55 mph x 1.47 = 80 feet per second.) With this in mind, let's add the perception and reaction distance to the formula.
You're traveling at 80 feet per second and you see a hazard in the road ahead. It takes about ¾ of a second for your brain to acknowledge the hazard. During this fraction of a second, you've traveled an additional 60 feet. This is the perception distance.
Now that your brain has acknowledged the hazard ahead, it takes another ¾ of a second for it to tell the foot to move from the gas pedal to the brake pedal and apply pressure. During this reaction time, you've traveled another 60 feet.
So from the time you perceive the hazard until the time your foot is applying pressure to the brake pedal, you've traveled 120 feet but your car still isn't stopped. At 55 mph, on a dry road with good brakes, your vehicle will skid approximately 170 feet more before stopping. This distance, combined with the perception and reaction distances, means you need about 300 feet to stop a car traveling at 55 mph. As a point of reference, Lambeau Field is 360 feet long, end to end. Keep this in mind as you follow that other car on your way home tonight.
Don’t drink and drive
When you have a blood alcohol content of just .02 your judgement, comprehension, concentration, coordination, and vision are all affected. These are all senses that need to be used while behind the wheel. According to the CDC, there were 9,967 people killed in alcohol related accidents. If you have had a few drinks make sure you have a safe ride home before getting into your vehicle and putting your life and the lives of others at risk.
Accidents happen! At Precision Collision Auto Body, our goal is to make the repair process as quick and easy as possible. Whether it is working with your insurance company or you are paying out of pocket for repairs, we will work with you to offer a great customer experience and a quality repair. If you have been in an accident, give us a call at (320)685-5310 and we will help you get back on the road.