Driving can be dangerous. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Texas had over 3,000 fatal crashes in 2019 alone. Many of these accidents were caused by common mistakes made by drivers.
Here are the most common mistakes Texas drivers make, and how a safe driver course can help you avoid them:
Distracted driving is a leading cause of accidents in Texas, accounting for over 95,000 accidents in 2019. Distractions can include anything that takes your attention away from the road, such as using a phone, eating, drinking, or adjusting the radio.
“The biggest mistake drivers make is taking their attention off the road,” said Patrick Mileham, DriveSafe Online director of editorial development. “Many drivers think that they can multitask while driving, but the truth is that anything that takes your attention away from the road can be dangerous.”
A defensive driving course can teach you how to avoid distractions while driving and provide tips for staying focused on the road. The course can also help you understand the risks associated with distracted driving and the consequences of causing an accident.
Speeding is another common mistake made by Texas drivers. In 2019, speeding was a contributing factor in over 32,000 crashes in the state. Speeding can increase the severity of an accident and reduce the amount of time you have to react to unexpected situations.
A safe driver course can teach you about the risks associated with speeding and provide strategies for driving at safe speeds and setting safe following distances. The course can also cover the consequences of getting a speeding ticket, including fines, increased insurance premiums, and points on your driving record.
Failure to Yield
Failure to yield is another common mistake made by Texas drivers. This can occur when a driver fails to yield to a pedestrian or another vehicle that has the right of way. Failure to yield was a contributing factor in over 24,000 crashes in Texas in 2019.
“Drivers who fail to yield are not only breaking the law, but they’re also putting themselves and others at risk,” said Mileham. “Many drivers don’t realize that failure to yield is an aggressive driving trait that can lead to serious accidents and injuries.”
A driver safety course can teach you about the different types of intersections and yield situations and provide strategies for navigating them safely. The course can also cover the importance of yielding to emergency vehicles and the consequences of failing to do so.
Driving Under the Influence
Driving under the influence is a serious offense in Texas and is a leading cause of accidents in the state. In 2019, over 2,800 crashes were attributed to driving under the influence.
“Impaired driving is one of the most dangerous mistakes a driver can make,” said Mileham. “Drinking slows reaction time, decreases vision, and greatly affects your overall judgment. All of these side effects are extremely dangerous when you’re behind the wheel.”
A defensive driving course can teach you about the dangers of driving under the influence and provide strategies for avoiding it. The course can also explain the legal and financial consequences of getting a DUI, including fines, license suspension, and jail time.
Not Wearing a Seatbelt
Not wearing a seatbelt is another common mistake made by Texas drivers. In 2019, over 800 people were killed in accidents where they were not wearing a seatbelt.
Seatbelts are one of the most effective safety devices in a vehicle. Not wearing a seatbelt can increase the risk of serious injury or death in an accident, even if the accident is relatively minor.
A safe driver course can teach you about the importance of wearing a seatbelt and provide tips for ensuring that you and your passengers are properly restrained.
Taking a Defensive Driving Course
If you’re looking to improve your driving skills and avoid common mistakes on Texas roads, a safe driver course can be an excellent option. Here are some tips for selecting and taking a safe driver course:
Look for a course that is approved by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR). This will ensure that the course meets the state’s requirements for driver education. The DriveSafe Online Texas Defensive Driving course is approved by TDLR.
Choose a course that is interactive and engaging. A course that includes videos, animations, and quizzes can help you stay focused and retain information. The DriveSafe Online Texas Defensive Driving course includes full-screen videos with drone and in-car views, interesting animations and interactive activities, and end-of-chapter quizzes that check your understanding of the content while it’s still fresh in your mind.
Make sure the course is convenient for you. Online courses are a great option because you can take them from the comfort of your own home and work at your own pace. The DriveSafe Online Texas Defensive Driving course is 100% online and accessible from your desktop, laptop, tablet, and smart phone.
The Benefits of Taking a Safe Driver Course
Taking a safe driver course can provide numerous benefits, including:
Reduced insurance premiums: Many insurance companies offer discounts to drivers who complete a defensive driving course. This can help you save money on your car insurance.
Improved driving skills: A safe driver course can help you become a better and safer driver. This can reduce your risk of getting into an accident and help you feel more confident behind the wheel.
Avoiding points on your driving record: Completing a driver safety course can help you avoid points on your driving record, which can lead to increased insurance premiums and even license suspension.
Meeting court requirements: If you’ve been ordered by a court to complete a defensive driving course, taking the DriveSafe Online Texas Defensive Driving course can help you fulfill this requirement and avoid legal consequences.
Driving is an everyday activity for most Texans, but it’s also a dangerous one. By avoiding common mistakes like distracted driving, speeding, and failure to yield, you can reduce your risk of getting into an accident and stay safe on the road. By taking a safe driver course seriously and applying what you’ve learned to your everyday driving, you can become a safer and more confident driver.