Did COVID Lockdown Hurt Your Driving Skills? Follow These Tips
Like many people across the U.S., you might have been working from home during the pandemic. With vaccination rates increasing, more people are returning to the office and driving more regularly. If you didn’t drive much during the pandemic, you might find your confidence behind the wheel has faded.
Traffic decreased all over the U.S. during 2020, and readjusting to busy roads can be challenging. Despite your best efforts, accidents can still occur. If you suffer an injury in an accident, you’ll want the experienced St. Louis auto accident attorneys of Cofman Townsley on your side to get the compensation you deserve.
As you begin to venture further from home again, follow these tips to stay safe and brush up on your driving skills.
Take a Refresher Course
One of the best things people who haven’t driven in a while can do is take a refresher course. Invest in a defensive driving course in St. Louis, approved by The National Safety Council and taught by a certified instructor; you can choose between the four or eight-hour modules (DDC-8 or DDC-4). These courses can improve your behavior and attitude behind the wheel, allowing you to regain your confidence.
Some insurance companies also offer a discount to individuals who complete these defensive driving programs.
Even after taking a course, ease yourself back into heavy traffic by taking shorter drives around your local area to refamiliarize yourself with the vehicle and rules of the road. If parking distresses you, take some time to practice your parallel parking on quiet streets before driving into the city.
Plan Your Route
An often overlooked tip for staying safe on the road is planning your route before a trip. Whether you are taking a long or short drive, researching the directions in advance can make you feel more comfortable driving.
Especially if you drive in a busy urban area, checking your route before departing home can be very helpful. Driving in the city with a GPS can often be stressful, and constantly looking at the screen is a dangerous distraction. If you’re planning to use route navigation, turn on voice commands, so the directions are auditory, allowing you to keep your eyes on the road ahead.
You should also check the weather and traffic conditions before you start driving. If there are storms or any problematic weather conditions in the forecast that could reduce visibility or traction on the road, you might want to reschedule your travel if it’s non-essential.
When taking trips that involve driving for multiple hours, it’s important to stop when you feel tired. It’s a good idea to plan stops along the way at restaurants or gas stations for a break and a drink or bite to eat. Fatigue is a common cause of road accidents because your reaction time is slower when you’re tired. Be sure to get enough sleep the night before a long drive so you can stay alert on the road.
Get Your Car Checked
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends getting your car serviced before going on a long road trip this summer. It’s essential to check your tires, the car battery, and fluids to ensure that everything is running smoothly.
When taking a long road trip in summer, make sure your AC is working. Test other car features yourself, such as seat belts, lights, and windshield wiper function, a couple of weeks before you plan to take a long drive. That way, if any problems are apparent, you have ample time to take the car to a mechanic for repairs.
Contact Cofman Townsley If You Are Involved in a Car Accident
Even if you take all the appropriate safety measures before you return to the road post lockdown, the possibility of an accident is always present. If you become injured in a car crash, contact St. Louis personal injury attorneys at Cofman Townsley.
We have over 50 years of experience and are available 24/7 to help injury victims. Our team can negotiate with your insurance company, so you receive the maximum compensation. If your injury is the result of another driver’s negligence, you may be able to file a lawsuit for additional damages. Get in touch with personal injury lawyers at Cofman Townsley today for a complimentary consultation to find out more.