Driving is not a right; it is a privilege. As such, those who drive are responsible for using caution and great care when behind the wheel. There are many rules of the road that must be followed by drivers in Missouri, but there are also many behaviors that can increase the likelihood of being in an accident. To limit your risks, try to avoid these less-than-stellar driving practices.
Since Missouri is an at-fault state, that means that whoever is negligent in an accident is responsible for paying for any injuries and damages. To make sure that you aren’t at fault, exercise good driving behaviors. To avoid an accident:
- Always make sure that if you are entering onto a roadway that you look both ways. It is important to be cautious of all lanes of traffic and all surroundings to avoid being in an accident.
- Recognize your blind spots instead of relying on your car. New safety features and cameras are a great convenience, but don’t make the mistake of thinking that they can override your vigilance. Be aware of when things are in your blind spot, and don’t rely too heavily on your mirrors or sensors.
- Don’t follow too close behind or tailgate. Riding closely on the tail of another driver isn’t going to make them go any faster or get you to your destination quicker. It is only going to increase the chances of you being in a car wreck. Keep a safe buffer in between you and the car ahead of you, just in case they stop suddenly.
- Drive appropriately for the weather conditions. If there is snow on the road or heavy rain, take precautions and adjust your driving behaviors accordingly. Just because there is a posted speed limit doesn’t mean you can’t go under it when conditions call for you to use special care.
- If you see someone driving erratically, move out of their way. If someone is tailgating you, then move aside and let them pass. It is not your job to monitor their bad behaviors and slamming on your brakes to teach them a lesson, or even slowing down, might be creating the potential for disaster.
- Maintain your vehicle. Make sure that your car is in working order by always maintaining it according to the manufacturer’s guidelines.
- Obey the speed limit. In Missouri the posted speed limits are not just an optional guide - they are the law. Make sure to follow posted speeds not just to avoid a ticket but also to reduce the potential for an accident.
The best way to avoid an accident is by driving to prevent one. Practice good driving habits when out on the road to limit the risks of being in an accident and also to reduce the potential that you might be at fault. If you are in an accident, make sure to call a St. Louis car accident attorney at The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. to protect your legal interests and help you get the compensation you are entitled to under Missouri law.