Defensive Driving – part three

Safety and driving defensively affects your commercial insurance program and is an important piece of your overall safety strategy for your company. In part-three we are going to look negotiating intersections, and safe following distances.

5. Negotiating Intersections:

a. Intersections are the most accident-likely areas.

b. Visibility at many intersections is obstructed by buildings, landscaping, or other vehicles.

c. Drivers misjudge traffic situations and clearance.

d. At Intersections The Driver Should:

(1) Check for actual or potential hazards well in advance of the intersection.
(2) Look to the left, then right, then left again before entering the intersection.
(3) Maintain a safe following distance.

6. Safe Following Distance:

a. A safe following distance:

(1) Enables the driver to stop or steer around without mishap if the vehicle in front comes to a sudden stop.
(2) Is greater than the distance required for reaction time (3/4 second) but less than the total stopping distance. Keeping a separation of at least two seconds between the vehicle being followed (the “two second” rule) automatically increases following distance as speed is increased.

b. Following distance should be:
(1) Increased by 50% is the vehicle is large and/or heavy.
(2) Doubled if road surface is loose or slippery, vision is obscured, or driver is not fully alert.
(3) Tripled if road surface is packed snow or ice.

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