It’s a stressful moment in any parent’s life when their teenage son or daughter learns how to drive. It’s an unfortunate reality that teenagers are at an inordinately high risk for fatal auto accidents. In 2009, eight teens a day between the ages of 16 and 19 were killed in motor vehicle accidents (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). This is why it’s extremely important for teenagers to learn the most effective driving techniques possible.
Our auto accident attorneys want to discourage parents from teaching new drivers these outdated driving rules.
- Old Rule: Hands at 10 and 2 o’clock position
Experts over the years have taught motorists to drive with their hands at a “10 and 2” o’clock position. The safer position is actually “9 and 3” where full 180-degree turns are possible. Some instructors also suggest the “8 and 4.” However this can cause driver fatigue and be hazardous to drivers with large stomachs or chests.
- Old Rule: Follow Two Seconds Behind
“Most drivers were originally taught to follow 2 seconds behind the motorist in front of them. For better road safety, it’s recommended that drivers instead leave 3 to 4 seconds between vehicles,” Scott Mann explains, auto accident attorney. “While following the other vehicle, choose a fixed landmark such as a sign or building. If you reach the same landmark before you count to 3, then you are following too close. Giving yourself more time to react to inclement weather, road conditions, and heavy traffic can greatly increase safety — especially for inexperienced teen drivers.”
- Old Rule: Braking with the Left Foot
Parents and instructors have been incorrectly teaching new drivers to brake with the left foot and use the right for acceleration. Due to the shifting of weight, this results in dangerous, off-balance driving maneuvers. Motorists following your vehicle will also be confused if you constantly ride the brake. To increase road safety, it’s highly recommended that drivers use the right foot for both the brake and gas pedals.
Please call our auto accident attorneys if you or a loved one has been injured in an accident. Mann, Wyatt & Tanksley is honored to serve you and your case!