Distracted driving is the number one killer on the roads and has played a role in almost 25 per cent of all road fatalities in Ontario so far in 2015, according to the Ontario Provincial Police. Drivers can enhance their focus by leaving their phones alone and turning off notifications to reduce temptation. If it’s too tempting, throw your phone in your trunk or glove box. A text is not worth the cost of a life.
2. Always Play the “Eye-Spy” Game
Keep your eyes open for the little guys – pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists. Remember
to give them space, to slow down when making turns, and remain cautious even after you’ve stopped your car. Always check over your shoulder, especially before opening your car door. You don’t want to give anyone the infamous door prize, which can be fatal.
3. Stay Calm and Courteous
Everyone has somewhere to be. Be patient and calm when behind the wheel.
4. Keep Speed in Check
You have the power to influence other drivers, whether you’re driving too fast or too slow, both of which can put drivers and vulnerable road users at risk. Sticking to the speed limit can save a life. One study showed that a pedestrian hit by a driver doing 40 km/h has a 25 per cent chance of dying, which increased to 85 per cent at 60 km/h.
5. Leave Lots of Space, Especially Around Cyclists
It takes way less time to brake on two wheels than it does on four, so always leave enough space to safely stop if someone on two wheels is in front of you. When you’re passing a cyclist be sure to slow down and leave a minimum of one meter between you. If possible, it’s recommend you change lanes. If not, be sure to maintain a safe distance, stay back and only pass when it’s safe for you and the cyclist.
**Information derived from online sources.