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5 Gears of Safe Driving

Suggested procedures to increase the safety within a driving environment.
by

Charles Baumann

on 7 September 2012

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Transcript of 5 Gears of Safe Driving

5 Gears to Safer Driving 1.) Inspect, Set and Prepare to Drive [Pre-trip Inspection ensures safe and legal vehicle operation.] - Inspect the vehicle thoroughly including, tires, suspension,
fluid levels, auxiliary equipment, and all signal lights.

- Note any load and concerns about that attached load…
including trailers, loaded/unloaded water/sewer/vacuum tanks, and houses. [Adjust your seat and mirrors for maximum driving visibility.] Before starting;

- adjust seat first

- buckle up

- then set mirrors and steering wheel to your comfort level and for maximum visibility. [Mental Preparation is critical to a safe drive.] - Start the vehicle, check all gauges, get a good view of your surroundings, and plan ahead for your next moves.

**When driving, always be most aware of your direct danger zones. Danger Zones are areas of higher accident potential. Prevention includes anticipating the moves and actions of others around you.

Areas of higher potential:
Intersections
Crosswalks
Merging Lanes

Preventative actions:
Attention to tire direction
Eye contact with other drivers
Keeping focus on distant and coming activity 2.) Gather Information There is a multitude of changes and interactions going on
as you drive and continually gathering information allows you
better place your vehicle in a safe zone. Windshield:
Look as far into the direction of travel as possible.
This allows you to gather information that will help you make decisions while driving ahead of time. Mirrors:
Use your mirrors on a regular basis to ensure you know what is around your vehicle at all times.
TMC suggests a minimum of every 10 seconds, because at high speeds, your surroundings change rapidly. High Danger Checks:

Drivers should always check their rear view mirror prior to and during slow downs and stops.

Drivers should always be looking for escape routes when approaching intersections, and/or parking areas. 3.) Position your vehicle in the Safe Zone The position of your vehicle significantly influences your ability to respond to the information you gather while driving. Safe following distance varies...

- Size of vehicles and load attachments
- Weather and road conditions
- High hazard areas Good Roadway Cushion:
-Maintain a "4 - 6 second count"
-Position vehicle in "loner" pattern 4.) Signal Interpretation Learning to interpret signal information of other vehicles can improve driver processing of information and reaction choice. Signals... running, flashers, turn, reverse and brake lights indicate vehicle intentions. Tire Position... of other vehicles at stops and intersections are indicators of directional intention. Head and Eye Position... these two indicators reveal the direction they are looking and intending on traveling. Traffic Signals... light color and amount of vehicles slowed or stopped can be indications of pending traffic signal change. 5.) Maintain Safe Drive Utilizing all other gears to get to this point, we now have all the information we need to position our vehicles in manner to avoid any negative interactions. Driving is a job in itself, and jobs require your utmost attention while completing them.

Acquiring proper information is a must.
Making proper choices based on that information is a must.
Positioning your vehicles to avoid negative interactions is a must.
Completing a safe drive each time you drive a vehicle is a must. The tools learned in this course put you in the proper position to drive safely…all you have to do is use them. 1st Gear… Inspect, Set and Prepare
Ensure the vehicle and attachments are ready for the drive.
2nd Gear… Gather information
Look far into direction of travel, use mirrors, focus on high danger areas.
3rd Gear… Vehicle Positioning
Safe following distance for conditions, and safe position on the roadways.
4th Gear… Signal Interpretation
Gather all possible information from others’ signals.
5th Gear… Execution of a Safe Drive
It is an expectation…use all your tools to do it safely. On The Road with TanMar:

- To conclude this program, the instructor will take you on the road for a demonstration of the program contents in action.

- You will be asked to drive and be evaluated on use of your newly acquired habits.
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