Driving is a complex task that requires constant attention and quick decision-making. However, despite the best intentions, we all make mistakes on the road from time to time. These errors can lead to accidents, injuries, and even fatalities. Let’s look at the eight most common mistakes that cause accidents and collisions, how to avoid them, and where to go if you need your windshield serviced or replaced.

1. Distracted Driving

Probably the most common and dangerous mistake drivers make is getting distracted behind the wheel. Whether it’s texting, adjusting the radio, eating, or simply daydreaming, any distraction can split your focus and slow your reaction times.

Avoidance Tip: Keep your eyes on the road, your hands on the wheel, and your mind on driving. If you need to do something that takes your attention away, like making a phone call or eating, pull over safely first. Be sure to use hands-free technology for tasks whenever possible.driving safety tips

2. Speeding

Getting there faster is tempting but speeding increases the risk of losing control of your vehicle and reduces the effectiveness of safety features like airbags and seat belts. Also, traffic light patterns often mean speeding gets you nowhere just as quickly.

Avoidance Tip: Always follow speed limits and adjust your speed according to road conditions. Remember, the faster you go, the longer it takes to stop.

3. Tailgating

Following too closely—also known as tailgating—is a common cause of rear-end collisions. Drivers who tailgate don’t give themselves enough room to stop if the vehicle in front of them suddenly brakes.

Avoidance Tip: Always maintain a safe following distance. The general rule of thumb is to leave at least three seconds of space between you and the car in front of you. Count from when a marker passes the back of the car in front of you until you pass it.

4. Not Using Turn Signals

Failing to use turn signals is another common driving mistake. Signaling lets other drivers know your intentions, allowing them to adjust their driving accordingly.

Avoidance Tip: Make it a habit to use your turn signals every time you change lanes or turn. Even if you think no one is around, it’s better to signal unnecessarily than not at all.

5. Ignoring Traffic Signs and Signals

Ignoring traffic signs and signals is a dangerous mistake that can lead to serious accidents. These signs and signals are designed to manage the flow of traffic and ensure safety on the roads.

Avoidance Tip: Always obey traffic signs and signals. They provide crucial information about road conditions, speed limits, and potential hazards. Even if you think the road is clear, never run a red light or stop sign.

6. Overloading Your Vehicle

Overloading your vehicle affects its handling and braking ability while putting excessive strain on tires. It’s crucial to understand your vehicle’s load capacity and not exceed it.

Avoidance Tip: Check your vehicle’s manual for its maximum load capacity. If you must carry heavy loads regularly, consider getting a vehicle designed for that purpose. If your car is near capacity, increase your following distance to account for needing more time to stop.

7. Neglecting Vehicle Maintenance

Failing to maintain your vehicle can lead to mechanical failures on the road, causing accidents. Regular vehicle maintenance is essential to ensure your vehicle remains in good working condition and is safe to drive.

Avoidance Tip: Stick to a regular maintenance schedule. This includes checking tire pressure, changing oil, replacing worn-out brake pads, and ensuring lights and signals are working properly.

8. Fatigued Driving

Driving while tired or fatigued can be as dangerous as driving under the influence. Fatigue slows reaction time, impairs judgment, and can even lead to falling asleep at the wheel.

Avoidance Tip: Never drive if you’re feeling tired or drowsy. If you start to feel fatigued while driving, find a safe place to pull over and rest. If possible, share the driving with another person on long trips.

By being aware of these common driving mistakes and taking steps to avoid them, you can significantly increase your safety on the road. Remember, safe driving isn’t just about protecting yourself—it’s also about ensuring the safety of other road users. So, let’s all do our part to make our roads safer.

No matter how safely you drive, things happen. When it comes to windshield repair and replacement, trust Texan Glass & Solar Control to offer the best and most affordable parts and services. Visit one of our locations today to get your windshield looking its best.