Tips for First Time DriversJuly 9, 2019
Whether you are a teenager getting your first driver’s license, or a well-established adult getting behind the wheel for the first time, attention to safety is essential to enjoying the experience. Driving is a privilege that offers independence and freedom, but it comes with a huge responsibility. Knowing the rules of the road and being aware of safe driving tips can ensure your protection as well as the safety of everyone on the road.
Adjust the Vehicle to Your Position
- Slide the driver seat to a position that is comfortable and allows the greatest range of vision.
- Ensure that your feet rest securely on the brake and gas pedal.
- Tilt the steering wheel so that your hands rest comfortably in the proper position.
- Make sure the steering wheel is clear of the abdomen and thigh areas so that it moves without constraint.
- Adjust rear-view and side mirrors to give a full view of what is behind you and your blind spots.
Do Not Become a Distracted Driver
- Turn off your cell phone and refrain from making calls or texting while driving.
- To avoid temptation, put your cell phone in the trunk or backseat of your car where it is out of reach.
- Limit the amount of passengers in the car.
- Refrain from eating and drinking while driving.
- Pull over to the side of the road before using navigation devices.
- Do not reach over to the glove box, the passenger seat, or the backseat while driving.
- Ensure you are well rested before you depart to avoid drowsy driving.
- Pull off the road to a safe area if you need to attend to children or other passengers in the car.
- Choose your radio station or playlist before you drive.
Choose a Path for Comfortable Travel
- Plan a route that uses roadways that you are comfortable driving and avoid highways or back roads that are unfamiliar.
- Take the longer route if it means you will be more confident driving it.
- Be aware of the time of day you are driving. If you have problems seeing at night, keep your driving to daylight hours while you gain experience.
- Avoid roadways that have difficult intersections or on/off ramps when first starting out behind the wheel.
- Choose a route that allows you to travel at a comfortable speed. Major highways with speed limits of 60 miles per hour can be intimidating to a new driver.
- Always know where your driver’s license, insurance card, and registration are.
- Perform routine inspections and maintenance of tires, fluids, windshield wipers, and lights.
- Make sure your gas tank does not fall below one-quarter.
- Carry a few bottles of water, non-perishable snacks, and a blanket in the trunk of the car in the event you are ever stuck or disabled.
- In the event of an accident, stay calm and call law enforcement for assistance.
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