Three60’s Driving Guides are brief information sheets for drivers on a whole range of driving topics including bad weather, attitude, cornering, country driving, distracted driving, journey planning, speed, wellbeing and many more.
These useful guides have been specifically designed to appeal to drivers who want to carry out a quick refresher of their driving skills on a particular topic.
Learn The Basics Of ABS
ABS is an abbreviation for Anti-lock Braking System. It works with the regular brakes on your vehicle and keeps your brakes from locking up when used in an emergency situation. This helps to prevent your vehicle from skidding in the event of rapid braking, especially on wet or slippery roads.
However, many drivers do not benefit from ABS because the correct techniques for using it are almost the complete opposite of the techniques taught about emergency braking in cars.
ABS can be a positive safety feature on vehicles, but only if used correctly.
Get Off To A Safe Start
Accelerating is something that all drivers do but many are oblivious to the way in which they do it. In fact many probably fail to realise that there is a good deal of skill involved in safe acceleration.
The first thing to learn is the three A’s: AVOID AGGRESSIVE ACCELERATION!
Next you should learn the three S’s: SLOWLY, SMOOTHLY and STEADILY!
Get the basics of accelerating right and your journeys should be much more comfortable.
Address Your Attitude
Attitude can be defined as: ‘How you might react or behave in a specific circumstance’.
Your attitude will determine everything from your approach to following distances, the speed you choose to travel at, the way you interact with other drivers, as well as your appetite for takings risks, such as drinking and driving. Your attitude will even influence your thinking on what constitutes a hazard in the first place.
By following some best practice advice you can learn how to develop and maintain the right attitude.
Avoiding Damage While Parked
Don’t Be A Victim Of Damage
Damage caused to vehicles while parked is a major problem.
In some cases, drivers causing damage to parked vehicles will ‘dent and run’ leaving the victim with a damaged vehicle. This problem is escalating, with damage ranging from minor dents, nicks and scratches to the more serious cases of broken taillights, bumpers and smashed side / wing mirrors.
There are a number of steps you can take to help reduce damage to your vehicle while parked.
Avoiding Rear-End Collisions
Watch Your Rear
Rear end collisions are among the most common types of incident on the road. The main causes of rear end collisions include drivers following the vehicle in front too closely and inattentiveness. In other words, DRIVER ERROR!
Drivers are most commonly rear-ended at slow speeds – usually at junctions, roundabouts, intersections and traffic lights. Rear end shunts also frequently occur in heavy traffic when vehicles are crawling along or when they slow down suddenly.
Many drivers think there is nothing they can do to prevent being rear-ended by others, but in fact there are many hazard prevention techniques you can employ to try to keep your rear intact.
When The Weather Turns Bad
Heavy rain, snow, ice, fog, high winds and sleet are all common conditions which can make driving extremely hazardous.
Where possible driving in these conditions should be avoided, but this is not always an option, especially as bad weather can be unexpected.
There are many steps you can take to improve your safety when the weather is bad, starting before you even get in your vehicle.
Open Your Eyes To Blind Spots
Blind spots are areas that drivers cannot see by looking through their windows or mirrors.
Failure to check blind spots can lead to collisions, injuries and fatalities. Help reduce your risk of being involved in a blind spot incident by following a few simple collision avoidance techniques.
Before You Start – Learn To Stop
Braking is one of the BASIC elements of safe driving – and one of the most important.
Getting it wrong can lead to all kinds of dangerous situations, such as:
- Loss of control.
- Rear-end collisions.
There are three S’s of braking: SLOWLY, SMOOTHLY and STEADILY! Remembering these techniques will reduce your chances of encountering any problems when coming to a stop.
Are You In Control?
An emotion is a temporary state of mind which can affect a person’s behaviour.
Emotions can be triggered in a number of ways. For example, a person may be scared by a frightening situation; may be upset after hearing bad news; may be angry after a conversation with a colleague or may be euphoric after a happy surprise.
Being in control of your emotions is a crucial element in safe driving as losing control can lead to risk-taking, mistakes, distracted behaviour, crashes and even altercations with other road users. Some simple techniques can help.
Learn How To Drive Yourself Round The Bends
While cornering may seem like a simple action that you don’t have to think about there is actually a great deal of skill involved in cornering safely.
Cornering should be considered as part of the ABCs of driving – together with accelerating and braking – as it is important to know how to accelerate and brake correctly when driving round bends. Getting each of the ABCs right can help you to stay in control of your vehicle when negotiation curves in the road.
Wise Up On Country Roads
Drivers don’t always realise how dangerous country roads can be and often think it is safe to drive faster on rural roads.
Yet statistically the worst crashes, which result in death or life changing injury, are more likely to occur on fast, single lane carriageways.
A number of collision avoidance techniques can help reduce your chances of having a rural road crash.
Before You Cruise
Cruise control is a system installed in some vehicles which automatically controls the vehicle’s speed. The driver is able to set a required speed at which the vehicle takes over the acceleration of the vehicle until the driver brakes or cancels the system.
Cruise control can help to improve fuel efficiency by maintaining the same speed and can also reduce the chances of a driver speeding inadvertently. However, it can be dangerous if drivers do not know how to use it correctly and when to use it.
Defend Yourself On The Road
Defensive driving is a style of driving which can help you to keep away from problems on the road. A defensive driver does not just concentrate on his or her own actions, but also concentrates on the actions of other road users.
Additionally, a defensive driver goes beyond the laws of the road, continuously assessing the potential hazards and adapting his or her driving behaviour to suit the conditions.
The main purpose of defensive driving is to reduce the chance of collisions or incidents despite the actions of other road users and the conditions on the road.
Are You Paying Attention?
Driving is a skill which requires full concentration, alertness and attention. The road environment can change in an instant and in order to react safely you need to be fully aware of what is happening around you at all times.
Driving while distracted is irresponsible and extremely dangerous – and the consequences of distracted driving can be devastating. Millions of crashes occur annually due to distracted driving, many of them resulting in serious injury and lost lives.
To be a safe driver you can never allow yourself to be distracted, not even for a second.
Driving At Night
Open Your Eyes To The Dark
Driving at night is much more challenging than driving in the day. It is more difficult to see in the dark, and therefore it is more difficult to spot hazards at night. For this reason, it is particularly important that you watch your speed at night and make sure you look out for potentially dangerous situations.
There are a number of steps you can take to cut the risks when driving at night.
Ready, Set, Go Green
Eco-driving is a method of driving which reduces fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. By encouraging drivers to improve their behaviour on the road, eco-driving can also lead to a reduction in crashes.
Eco-driving does not require drivers to make any major changes but to adopt a number of smooth and safe driving techniques.
Are You Sitting Comfortably?
The science of ergonomics draws upon human biology, psychology, engineering and design to create environments in which people are able to work better and have a lower chance of injuring themselves.
Using the same techniques, driver ergonomics relates to the space within a vehicle and to the different factors which can affect a driver’s comfort. In
particular, driver ergonomics focuses on ways of reducing back injuries through poor posture.
Have An Escape Plan
An escape route is a ‘back-up’ route that a driver can take in case of a dangerous situation on the road.
It is a PREVIOUSLY CONSIDERED route away from danger – not an unplanned last minute action to avoid a collision.
The skill that separates a really good driver from an average driver is the ability to plan a safe escape route.
Open Your Eyes To Fatigue
Driver fatigue refers to driving while tired, sleepy or drowsy.
Drivers who are fatigued are likely to have slower reaction times, reduced vigilance and difficulty processing information. In extreme cases fatigue can cause a driver to fall into a ‘micro sleep’ where they lose consciousness for several seconds, or to completely fall asleep at the wheel.
There are several steps you can take to avoid driving while fatigued and identify the warning signs of becoming tired behind the wheel.
A head-on collision is one in which the front end of 2 vehicles collide.
Fatalities occur frequently in this type of collision, mainly due to the fact that the impact speed is a combination of the speed of both vehicles. In other words a head-on collision of 2 vehicles travelling at 60 mph / 96 kph is roughly equivalent to a vehicle hitting a stationary object at 120 mph / 193 kph.
Head-on collisions are usually the result of ‘lane-departure incidents’, where a vehicle moves from its original lane into a lane of oncoming traffic. This may be intentional (for example, if the driver is overtaking) or unintentional (such as if the driver loses control on a bend).
A number of incident prevention techniques can help to reduce your chances of being involved in a head-on collision.
Drive The Right Way For The Highway
Highways are very different to most other roads and require different skills from a driver.
Highways are generally much faster than inner city and country roads and because of this there is less time to react to hazards.
It is crucial to be on high alert when driving on highways as mistakes can have very serious consequences due to the fast speeds involved.
Get It Right At Intersections
Intersections (or ‘junctions’) are among the most hazardous places on the road and a common location for crashes.
Collisions at intersections usually occur when a driver fails to stop, fails to check properly before pulling onto a highway, fails to manoeuvre correctly or fails to obey the rules of the road. In other words, intersection collisions are usually caused by driver error.
Several incident prevention techniques can help to prevent intersection collisions.
Before You Make A Move – Make A Plan
Journey planning is about avoiding unnecessary journeys, considering the many forms of transport available and planning the most appropriate route.
Before any journey you should ask yourself whether the journey is really necessary as cutting down on the number of journeys you make can reduce your chances of a collision, save you money and help the environment. If a journey is necessary then there are several ways you can help to make your time on the road as safe as possible.
Before You Make A Move
Lane changes might appear to be quite simple manoeuvres, but can actually be one of the most dangerous if not done correctly.
Changing lanes usually means merging into other traffic travelling in the same direction. There are many factors to consider including blind spots, speed of other vehicles, detecting a safe gap and signalling correctly.
In fact there are so many factors to consider that it is not surprising that the main cause of lane change collisions is driver error.
Your Safety Is Paramount
All drivers should be aware of the potential dangers facing them while driving. Would-be thieves are ready to strike in a number of situations and it is important for drivers to be on their guard and prepared for such incidents.
There are several precautions that you can take to improve your level of security on the road.
Get To Grips With The Petrol Pump
The price of fuel is constantly on the increase and drivers are continually looking for more and more ways of improving the efficiency of their driving. There are a number of useful steps drivers can take such as carrying less weight in their vehicle; ensuring tyres are correctly inflated and avoiding harsh acceleration.
However, drivers can also start the process of saving money AT THE PUMP. Although each step individually may not save a driver a huge amount of money, following these money-saving tips can add up to worthwhile savings over a number of years.
Additionally, although you may think that filling up your petrol tank is a simple task there are a number of potential hazards associated with refuelling.
Following the tips below can help to make the refuelling process safer as well as more cost effective.
Learn The Rules To Prevent The Rolls
A rollover incident is one in which a vehicle turns over onto its side or roof. Usually this type of incident is caused when a driver loses control at speed.
Rollover incidents are particularly frightening for anyone involved as the occupants of a rollover vehicle tend to be thrown around severely. The outcome of this type of incident is often serious injury or even death.
Several incident prevention techniques can help to prevent rollover incidents.
Sharing The Road
It’s Fair To Share
Looking out for other road users and displaying considerate behaviour is an important part of everyday driving. Yet all too often road users fail to look out for each other, which can lead to avoidable collisions and even to injury and death.
You can decrease your chances of causing, or being involved in, a collision by following some simple tips for sharing the road safely.
Don’t Be A Sideswiper
A sideswipe incident is one in which the side of one vehicle collides with the side of another.
Sideswipe incidents often occur when vehicles change lanes, pass other vehicles, merge onto a highway or swerve to avoid a hazard. A number of incident prevention techniques can help to reduce your chances of being involved in a sideswipe collision.
Learn To Stay In Control
A skid occurs when the tyres of a vehicle lose their grip on the road. The main contributory factors to skids are hard braking, sudden steering, excessive speed and harsh acceleration.
A skid can be a frightening occurrence for a driver but can almost always be prevented via a number of incident prevention techniques.
Put A Stop To Speeding
Speeding is one of the main causes of road traffic collisions – and one of the main causes of death on the roads.
Unfortunately, far too many drivers think it is ok to speed, and seem oblivious to the dangers and the many different reasons why speeding is not acceptable.
The most skilled drivers know why it is important to keep their speed to a safe – and legal – limit.
Get A Grip On Your Steering
Steering is one of the basic elements of driving, but also one of the most important. Your method of steering can affect the overall level of control you have over your vehicle.
Town / City Driving
Gear Up For The City
Driving in towns and cities can be very different to driving on other roads. Urban roads can be very busy, especially at peak times. They are also used by many different types of road users including car drivers, pedestrians and cyclists.
It is particularly important to be alert when driving in cities as there are often so many different things happening in all directions.
Although there are fewer fatal crashes on urban roads than rural roads, there are many more crashes involving injury or damage.
Truck – Long Distance
Go The Extra Mile
As a long distance truck driver you will be required to drive your vehicle for long hours, day in and day out.
Your level of risk on the road is high due to the amount of time you spend in your vehicle and the long hours you spend on monotonous roads. For this reason it is vital that you take safety seriously and take all the steps you can to be a responsible and safe driver.
There are a number of precautions you should take before getting into your vehicle and while on the road to help cut your chances of a collision.
Truck – Multi Drop Delivery
Before You Deliver
As a multi drop delivery driver you will be required to drive your vehicle for long hours, day in and day out.
Your level of risk on the road is high due to the amount of time you spend in your vehicle. For this reason it is vital that you take safety seriously and take all the steps you can to be a responsible and safe driver.
There are a number of precautions you should take before getting into your vehicle and while on the road to help cut your chances of a collision.
Take Care Of Yourself
The importance of a healthy lifestyle should never be underestimated particularly by drivers.
Driver wellbeing relates to any lifestyle factor that can affect safety on the road, including diet, exercise, sleep, drugs & alcohol, health and relaxation. An unhealthy lifestyle can lead to mistakes on the road, which can lead to crashes and injuries.
There are many relatively simple steps that you can take in your personal life to help keep you as safe as possible on the road.
This year’s World Day of Remembrance (WDR) for road traffic victims takes place on Sunday November 18.
Commemorated annually, WDR is a day to remember...