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Jul 02

Safe motorway driving

Posted by:AutoMoney

At some stage in our driving lives, chances are that we will all need to drive on motorways. This can be a very daunting task for new drivers, or people who have not experienced motorway driving before, but with a few top tips, you should stay nice and safe!

safe motorway drivingPrior to your journey

Before you set off on any journey you should always check your car for any damage and check your tyres, oil, and windscreen washer fluid.

Before setting off on your motorway journey, ensure that you have identified the route you would like to take, either by looking at maps prior to leaving, or that you have safely set up and installed your sat nav. Work out how long it should take you to reach your destination and give yourself enough time to have adequate breaks – it’s recommended that you should have at least a 15 minute break for every two hours of driving.

When on the road

Most motorways have three active lanes for traffic, however, you might find on some motorways that this has been expanded to four lanes. You will always need to pay attention on motorways, looking out for traffic and potential hazards in other lanes. Watch for merging traffic as well as reading road signs to ensure you stay in the right lane, or exit the motorway at the right time. It can be hard, tiring work! (Another reason to make sure you have your breaks!)

To stay as safe as possible, use the two second rule – ensure that you give yourself enough time and space between you and the vehicle in front of you in case you need to brake or react to an incident or hazard.  Make sure that you adjust this to a longer distance of at least four seconds if the conditions are bad; such as raining, icy, or poor light, for example.

Ensure that you use your mirrors frequently when driving on the motorway – things can happen behind you at an astonishing speed on motorways.

Make sure that you indicate BEFORE switching lanes and again, always check your mirrors! You should also take a glance behind you, to check your blind spot, before pulling into another lane.

Keep left. Unless you are overtaking or letting a car merge from a slip road, you should always be driving in the left hand lane. As before, always indicate and check your mirrors and blind spot before pulling in or out.

Beware of big loads; drivers of these vehicles can have bigger blind spots and also take longer to stop or react to a situation. If you overtake a larger vehicle, ensure it is safe to do so and the road ahead is clear. Give big vehicles a wide berth every time you move past them. 

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