If you are sitting waiting at a traffic light and someone crashes into you, then the crash is clearly the other driver’s fault.
When you are both moving, who is to blame may be less certain. You may both have contributed in some way. One of the most common ways a mainly blameless driver can contribute to a crash is not having their entire attention on the road at the time.
How can you stay alert?
Modern life can be hectic and make it hard to focus on one thing at a time. Yet there are few times when it is more crucial to give a task your full attention than driving.
- Set up your vehicle before moving off: Adjusting the seat and mirrors is much easier in modern cars, often requiring the flick of a button rather than physically moving them yourself. Yet you should still do this while stationary.
- Know where you are going: Looking at a map, entering addresses into a sat nav or peering out the window at the name of every street takes your eyes off the road. If you use a GPS, program it before you leave. If you use manual means, work your route out before you depart.
- Allow enough time: Being late can lead to poor driving decisions, such as speeding or trying to make a light that is already changing. Yet even if you avoid those, knowing you will be late is a distraction in itself. Instead of thinking about what the traffic is doing, you may be thinking about what your boss is going to say or what excuse you will give.
Even minor distractions can cost you the chance to avoid someone else’s poor driving. If a crash happens, you will need legal help to show why the collision was the other driver’s fault to get the compensation you need.