Monthly Archives: February 2017
We live in a do-it-now society
Remember when phones were connected by a cord? When you needed to call someone, you waited until you got home. Or perhaps you had those family vacations where dad drove all day and you stopped for a picnic lunch and for supper in a roadside diner.
Not anymore. We live in a do-it-now society. When you think of something, you do it. We have access to a variety of very convenient things that allow us to multitask. It’s not always bad. But the temptation is to multitask when driving.
Here are four things that you shouldn’t do while driving. Wait until the vehicle is stopped before you do these things
Calls: Increasingly, laws are being passed to ban handheld mobile devices while driving. This is a good idea. Our attention is diverted and so is one hand while driving. Wait until you stop the vehicle before making or taking a call
Eating: Who needs a side-of-the-road picnic anymore when you have fast food that is carefully wrapped and ready to eat? Unfortunately, we end up more focused on our burger and cola (and perhaps finding that dropped pickle) than we are on the road. Pull over and eat then get back on the road
Filming: YouTube is a great way to waste a few hours on a rainy weekend. It’s like watching America’s Funniest Home Videos and the worst of American Idol all wrapped up in one. Filming videos for YouTube can be fun too… except when you’re driving. If you see something funny on the road, don’t film it while you’re driving. Get a passenger to film or pull over or just skip the opportunity
Anger: It’s so easy to get angry when driving! When other drivers cut you off or fail to signal, you want to reach across from your vehicle to theirs and smack them. But anger does funny things to us. It makes us more aggressive and risk tolerant… and that ends up influencing our driving (for the worse). Don’t let your anger get the better of you. Wait until you get to the gym to blow off some of that anger tension.
Driving should be an activity where we remain fully focused on the road
But many drivers are using their driving time as an opportunity to do other things as well. It puts us all in danger and there is no reason for it.
If you’re happily and safely driving along and some other driver loses control and wrecks your vehicle, the collision repair team at your friendly local Boyd Autobody & Glass shop will be there to restore your vehicle and get you back on the road.
Statistically, nearly everyone will be involved in some form of collision in their lifetime. Thankfully, most accidents that occur are minor and involve minimal injuries and auto body repair. Getting into a vehicle accident can be an overwhelming experience. However, having vehicle insurance in place, protect you from repair expenses to your vehicle and may cover you in case of injury.
If you get into a vehicle collision, there are a few things that can be done post-collision to ensure your safety and minimize stress during the insurance claim process and to ensure a seamless collision repair experience.
Move Your Vehicle
At the time of the collision; most drivers feel that it’s best to leave the vehicle where the accident took place. However, if it’s safe to do so, the vehicle should be moved out of the flow of traffic, as this can help avoid further collisions (by pulling onto a shoulder or side street). Be sure to turn off your vehicle as soon after the collision as possible to prevent further danger from potential leaking fluids which can be combustible. Be sure to turn your hazard lights on to warn drivers of the collision and then exit the vehicle when it is safe to do so.
Check for Injuries
Be sure to check if you have been hurt from the collision, and if there are additional passengers, check to see if they were injured or not. If you or your passengers were significantly injured and require medical attention, it’s vital to call 911 immediately. In addition, if you were unharmed and it is safe to do so, check the passengers in the other vehicle (s) to see if they were injured or not.
Exchange Insurance Information and Document the accident
While you may be overwhelmed and shook up, it’s imperative to remain calm and ensure that all parties involved exchange insurance information and any other details pertaining to the collision. The following details should be obtained:
- Write down the license plate of the driver (s) as soon as possible, just in case they drive away from the scene of the accident
- Take note of the time of the collision
- Where the collision occurred
- The specific location (intersections)
- Details of how the collision occurred
- Collect the contact information of any witnesses that may have been nearby during the time of the collision. This could prove useful down the road as their statements can work in your favor if the matter had to be sent to court
- The insurance information details should include: the make and model of the vehicle, registration/policy number
- The name, address and telephone number of those involved in the collision
- Driver’s license number
If you have a cell phone with a camera, it is recommended to take photos of the scene of the collision and all the vehicles involved.
Call your insurance company as soon as possible
It’s vital to contact your insurance company as soon as possible after the collision has occurred. The insurance company will open up a claim for you and will ask questions about the collision. Be sure to have all of the documented information you have obtained from all parties involved, as this will ensure a smooth process with the insurance company.
If you do get into a collision, Boyd Autobody & Glass can help to restore the safety of your vehicle so you and your family can get back out on the road as quickly as possible! To receive an estimate for collision repairs on your vehicle, contact a Boyd Autobody & Glass near you or request a repair estimate online.
The Challenges of Driving At Dusk
One time of day we don’t think about is dusk. Unfortunately, dusk is a very difficult time to drive. Here are five top tips to drive at dusk:
1. Be aware of the quickly changing light conditions. One moment might be extremely sunny so we are forced to wear sunglasses, but within moments, the sun can darken and our sunglasses end up doing more harm than good. If we don’t have sunglasses, be aware that the rapidly changing light conditions can be very difficult on our eyes (which have a hard time adjusting to those fast-changing conditions). There isn’t a lot you can do about it but awareness helps.
2. Be aware of the setting sun. Have you ever had momentary blindness after a camera has flashed? The same thing can happen if we look into the sun while. This can happen if we are driving west during sunset or if we are driving east (and see the sun reflected in our mirrors). If possible, use your vehicle’s shades and adjust the mirrors. Consider pulling over to the side of the road to wait for sun to set, or take another route that doesn’t drive directly toward the setting sun.
3. Turn on headlights. With rapidly changing light conditions, it can be easy for someone to miss our vehicle, especially if the headlights aren’t on and becomes dark quickly. Turn on your headlights if you will be driving during dusk, even if it is still quite light out.
4. Be aware that this is a time for animals to come out. Although timid animals might not come out during the day, many of them come out at night when it feels safer. Animals come out because they are dazzled by the headlights of vehicles. Drive a little slower during dusk and pay special attention to the sides of the roads (especially in rural areas) to watch for movement among the grass that could indicate an approaching animal.
5. Be aware of changing temperatures. It’s easy to point out the obvious changing light conditions. Temperatures change at night and can have an impact on our ability to drive safely: If the temperature and humidity inside our vehicle is different than outside, our windows could fog up. You can correct this by opening the windows slightly or by running the defroster.
There Is A Disconnect Between What We Say and What We Do
Not because we are necessarily hypocritical by nature, but when we are behind the wheel, we might be in a hurry and therefore have an “incentive” to rush and make riskier driving decisions.
One of the ways that you can be a safer driver, is to provide an incentive to be a safer driver. This needs to be greater than the incentive to rush when we get behind the wheel.
How can we create a stronger incentive?
Take out your wallet. Now pull out the pictures of your spouse and your children. Before you get behind the wheel of your vehicle, think about them. Consider how your safe decisions behind the wheel right now will ensure that…
- You get to see them today
- You get to see the joy on their faces when you drive them to play sports
- You get to continue to provide for them by going to work
- You get to go on family vacations with them
Now consider the opposite… the “cost” of making unsafe driving choices…
- You may become hurt or killed and therefore unable to see them today or any other day
- Your wrecked car won’t allow you to drive them to play sports
- If injured, you may not be able to work and may not be able to provide for them
- You may not be able to take family vacations
Imagine that any collision that you have with someone else will have the same repercussions on them — you could be responsible for injuring someone else, keeping someone else’s child from enjoying sports, ruining family vacations, etc.
As Harsh As These Thoughts Are, They Are Not Intended To “Guilt” You Into Doing Anything
But rather they are given as examples to seriously consider the cost of driving unsafely and the benefit of driving safely. With more than 120,000 collisions causing injury or death on Canadian roads each year (according to Transport Canada), imagine the number of families impacted by decisions to drive unsafely. Although not all of those 120,000 collisions were necessarily caused by drivers driving unsafely, many of them were and even a slight reduction in that number can result in happier, healthier families.