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Monday, 24 April, 2017

Looking for a Better View Around Your Car

One of the greatest perils of driving is blind spots and difficulty with line of sight. Driver reaction is dependent upon being able to see and predict everything on the road and this can be a challenge for those piloting the vehicle.

There are some steps you can take to mitigate the problem and improve your view, along with your reaction time. Seconds could mean the difference between avoiding an accident and catastrophe, so it’s important to do what you can to give yourself the best visibility possible while driving.

Rearview mirrors
Your rearview mirrors are your most valuable resource when it comes to visibility on the road. Car and Driver now recommends adjusting the mirrors outward so you no longer see your own car in the reflection. This causes some disorientation for drivers who are used to seeing their own car, but it is safer because it eliminates one of the most troublesome blind spots for drivers. This positioning also helps deflect the bright reflections of other car’s headlights at night in the cabin of your vehicle.

Turn to Look
You can also briefly turn your head before you make any lane changes in order to make sure there is no one in your blind spot. Make sure to look prior to moving, as other cars can creep up very quickly and surprise you into a side-on collision. Some of these other tips and tricks can help to eliminate your blind spots, but it’s still better to be safe than sorry, so making certain by turning to look is a prudent move.

Keep Your Distance
Every professional driver from truckers to bus drivers to stunt people learn the rule of keeping 3-5 seconds behind the vehicle in front of you, depending on the weight of the car or truck you are driving. If the vehicle ahead needs to slam on the brakes suddenly, it can take several seconds of reaction time combined with the velocity of your vehicle before you are able to come to a complete stop. If possible, try to keep this distance between anyone following behind you as well.

Do Not Tailgate or Play Games
Some people will be overcome with road rage and try to play games with larger vehicles, either tailgating or swerving directly in front of buses or trucks and hitting the brakes. This will never end well, because these vehicles are far heavier than a traditional car or truck and will flatten you quicker than you can blink. Your impatience and anger with some of these slower-moving machines is unfounded, as many times they are carrying heavy cargo or are keeping their distance as they were trained to do. Remember, when it comes to large vehicles, if you cannot see their rearview mirrors, they cannot see you.

Safety is of the utmost importance when driving. People tend to forget that they are piloting a machine made from several tons of steel capable of doing a great deal of damage, because they become very comfortable with their cars after daily use. Respect for the power of the car or truck you are driving is essential, and understanding the best ways to eliminate issues like blind spots and line of sight difficulties will go a long way towards making you a better and safer driver out on the road.