Welcome to Driving: The Rules of the Road

We all have places to be but don't forget we all share the road. 

Nnaemeka Obidinma, Webmaster

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Getting a driver’s license is a huge milestone and provides a great feeling of freedom. However, while it is a time to celebrate, it also opens up more doors of responsibility that the new driver has to take into consideration. If the driver doesn’t do so, then he/she can get stopped by the police and ticketed, or cause an accident. Here are a few tips to keep your cool (and your car) while driving:

  • Keep off the phone: This is probably the most obvious issue one can fix in the car, but at the same time, it’s the hardest for some people to do. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA), there are an estimated 660,000 people who use their phones in the car while they’re driving. This is extremely dangerous because it leads to accidents and injuries, as well as death. It has gotten so bad that some states, including Virginia, have passed laws that ban the total usage of phones while driving for drivers under 18. Putting down your phone doesn’t hurt; don’t even touch it. If it’s absolutely urgent, set up a hands-free system in your car.
  • Don’t drive drowsy: Driving while tired is extremely dangerous. Sure, sometimes homework takes a while to complete, but driving with little sleep is not only unhealthy, it can lead to erratic movements and accidents.
  • Slow down, hotshot: Going fast may be fun in video games, but on the road it’s extremely dangerous to go over the speed limit. It’s also illegal and you’re more often than not going to get a speeding ticket. The speed limit is lowered to 25 MPH in school zones when the lights on the signs are flashing, and police are waiting on both sides of the street to catch unsuspecting speeders. Save the speeding for Mario Kart.
  • Follow the signs: Following the traffic lights and signs around you is the best way to keep safe on the road. Make sure you know what each sign means and always remember pedestrians have the right-of-way.
  • Be wary of others: We all have places to be but don’t forget we all share the road. Watch out for aggressive drivers; don’t let their actions affect your own.  If someone cuts you off, don’t drive up to them and make a rude gesture. On the flipside, don’t be the person that cuts other people off. Never put others at risk by being a reckless driver yourself.   Etiquette is very important on the road, just as it is in everyday life.

Driving causes a multitude of emotions to be displayed, be it good, bad or otherwise. If you follow these handy tips, you’ll help keep everyone safe on the road.  Safe and happy travels!

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