Our highways see millions of cars, trucks, vans and motorcycles out on the roads on a daily basis. Whether drivers are going to or from work, driving trucks for a living, driving on vacation or going on a shopping trip, dangers are all around on the highways. Some are weather related, which are usually out of our control. Some are related to the vehicle itself, for which we all have a responsibility to prevent problems that may arise. Other dangers are driver related, which each individual driver has control in preventing.
Each day, millions of drivers get into their vehicles and drive, putting themselves and other drivers at risk from a vehicle malfunction. All vehicles must pass yearly inspections to ensure that the vehicle is safe to be on the road. In the months between inspections, drivers are responsible for properly maintaining their vehicles themselves. Maintenance includes making sure that the brakes are functioning properly, that tires are properly inflated to the correct level and have adequate tread on them, and that lights and turn signals are in proper working condition to ensure that drivers can see the road during bad weather. By keeping their vehicle in a safe driving condition, drivers are reducing the chance of accident caused by vehicle malfunction.
Weather is the most unpredictable danger facing drivers. Depending on the season and location, drivers could be facing extreme heat or cold weather, rain, wind or snow. Driving in bad weather means it is necessary to make sure that your vehicle is equipped to handle weather related road conditions. Proper tires are important in snow and rain, as are properly functioning windshield wipers. Drivers need to make sure that they drive at an appropriate speed as well. Driving too fast in bad weather is not only a danger to you, but it endangers others on the road as well.
While you are in control of your own vehicle and what you do in it, you can’t control the other drivers you share the road with. While individual states have established rules and laws of the road, it is up to individual drivers to obey those rules. Drivers that drive over the speed limit can be a danger to others on the roadway. Drivers that do not follow stoplights, yield signs and other highway signage are also putting others at risk. Perhaps one of the most prevalent problems on the road today is drivers getting behind the wheel when they are not in the proper condition to drive. Drivers that are under the influence of alcohol, illegal substances or under the weather are a danger to themselves and to others. In addition, drivers that use cell phones without a hands free device or are distracted by other factors are a danger to everyone.