Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Top 4 Driving Habits That Will Cost You in the Long Run

Developing and maintaining good driving habits will make you less likely to get into a life-threatening car accident, and will save you a great deal of money. Speeding tickets and other traffic violations can cost you hundreds of dollars, and that's only where it begins. The more tickets and violations you accumulate, the more your insurance premiums will increase.

Many traffic violations come about because of bad driving habits. To help you avoid incurring expensive speeding tickets and heavy insurance premiums, we've outlined 4 of the most expensive driving habits.

1. Speeding
Many people will tell you to "follow the flow of traffic". While this is certainly important when traffic is moving slowly, going above the speed limit is rarely a good idea. Speed limits are designated based on the quality and type of road, and are meant to ensure safety. Going beyond the speed limit makes stopping times longer and increases your chances of causing a collision.

2. Tailgating
One of the worst driving habits when driving is following too closely to the driver ahead of you. Drivers will often do this in an effort to get the person ahead to change lanes. While it can often be aggravating to have someone driving slowly in the left-hand lane, for instance, tailgating can lead you to rear-end another driver. To determine whether you're following too closely, count the time between the moment the car ahead of you passes a fixed object and the moment you pass that same object. If it's less than 2 seconds, you're following too closely. In inclement weather, increase the time to 4 seconds.

3. Distracted driving
As Alberta's new legislation clearly demonstrates, distracted driving is a serious problem in our province. In the US, where statistics on distracted driving have been collected for longer, over 5,000 people a year are killed in accidents because of people trying to multitask while driving. You simply cannot text, make a phone call, or program your GPS while driving. If a police officer sees you fumbling with a device when you should be driving, he could fine you $172 and your insurance company may increase your premiums.

4. Not signalling
Of all the safe driving habits, signalling requires the least amount of effort. You literally only have to lift a pinkie to signal where you're going. It tells other drivers your intentions and can prevent collisions. Not only that, you can be charged and fined for failing to signal.


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