TaraCrooksUSAA's avatarTaraCrooksUSAAMoney Matters Blog | ‎09-03-2013 10:49 AM

Are You a Safe Driver?

shutterstock_126780482.jpgIt really is stunning how many tiny little changes we can make in our everyday life that would save us money. For instance; driving. We’ve all heard the stories (and watched the YouTube videos). We know that practicing safer driving can save lives. But you know when most people pay attention and really start thinking about safety? When it pops their bubble. When there’s a close call. When it hits their wallet. Hopefully, that is long before they’ve made a grave mistake of affecting a life or a family.


I have to be honest, until I was doing research on National Safe Driving Month I didn’t think that driving any differently than I already do would save me much more than a few bucks on my premium and not having to pay a ticket if I got caught for speeding.


My Grandpa always told me, “The worst driver is one who is convinced that he's the best driver in the world.” That’s funny, Grandpa, but true. Just for a moment, humor me by reading through a few things below with the belief that you aren’t the best driver in the world and let’s see if you could save some money –and drive safer - by just changing a few things.

 

  • Manage Your Time. If you really need to get there as fast as possible, there's one fool-proof solution: Leave earlier.
  • Maintain Constant Speed and Gradual Acceleration. You actually help protect your car and can save money. When you accelerate and break quickly, you’re making the gearbox and breaks in your car work harder than they were designed to.
  • Slow Down. Studies show that speeding is a factor in one-third of all fatal crashes. Not only can you save a life, you cansave money by not having to pay speeding tickets.
  • Save Money at the Pump. Driving comfortably at the speed limit and gradual braking all contribute to better fuel economy.
  • Pay Attention. My mama always said to me, “it’s not you I’m worried about, it’s them.” Drive defensively. Know what is going on around you and be aware of all situations that may/may not occur and be prepared to react appropriately.
  • Eyes on the Road, Hands on the Wheel. Your reaction time while text messaging creates a crash risk 23 times worse than driving while not distracted. Driving while using a cell phone reduces the amount of brain activity associated with driving by 37%. No text is worth dying for. Take the “It Can Wait” pledge at USAA.
  • Wear Your Seatbelt. When worn properly, seat belts can save lives. Not wearing your seat belt can result in hefty fines in most states.
  • Track How You Drive. As it becomes easier to track driver behavior through mobile apps and built in GPS, insurance companies can now provide a more accurate risk assessment based on your driving habits. Driving safer may save you money.


INTERACT:


How did you do? Any surprises?


Are there things you do on an everyday basis that you could change that would make you a safer driver and/or save you money?


What is your opinion on tracking driver behavior? If offered, is it something you would be willing to do?

 

Sources:

 

http://www.nhtsa.gov

 

http://www.distraction.gov

 

Safety guidelines are not intended to be all inclusive, but are provided for your consideration. Please use your own judgment to determine what safety features/ procedures should be used in each unique situation.