What Is Defensive Driving?

You may be familiar with defensive driving courses as a way to lower the cost of a ticket or an insurance premium. Here is a simple explanation of the concept of defensive driving and how you can implement it, even without taking a class.

Assume Every Driver Makes Mistakes

The philosophy behind defensive driving is the assumption that every other vehicle on the road is an accident waiting to happen and that your job is to prevent any of those accidents from involving your vehicle. Assuming other drivers will make errors may seem pessimistic, but thinking in this way changes people’s behaviors in a positive manner and helps them to avoid crashes.

Maintain a Bubble of Safety Around Your Vehicle

A key technique of defensive driving is to keep your distance from other cars. For example, most people learn in driver’s education courses to stay 3 seconds behind the car in front of them. However, you might increase this distance to 5 seconds when driving defensively. Ideally, you should extend the bubble of empty space to 360 degrees around your car.

Driving defensively is not difficult but it does take some getting used to. By changing just a few of your driving habits, you can substantially lower your risk of getting into an accident.

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