It's no secret that driving during rush hour is one of the most dangerous things you can do. Though it only lasts for an hour or two out of the 24-hour day, it accounts for 25 percent of all car accidents -- one out of every four. Everyone is in a hurry, workers are tired from a long day on the job, and there's far more road congestion than normal. Those things -- and other factors -- all increase the accident risks.
You can't just avoid it, though. You have to work and you must brave that rush hour traffic. As you do, these tips can help you stay safe:
Give Yourself Too Much Time
If it takes you 30 minutes to get to work or home again in good traffic, don't leave with just 30 minutes to spare. Give yourself 45 so that you can sit in traffic without worrying that you're going to be late. This helps to reduce aggressive driving, speeding and other dangerous issues.
When you do get stuck in traffic, and especially when you're late for dinner or another appointment, you can get stressed. This builds up and sometimes leads to road rage. Try to stay calm. Some people suggest listening to music or books on tape so that you're entertained and the wait won't feel as long.
So you've managed to stay calm, avoiding road rage and aggressive driving. That doesn't mean everyone else has done the same. Watch other cars, look for risks and dangerous drivers, and drive defensively to avoid drivers who are quickly heading toward an accident.
Be Extra Vigilant
Since you know the risks are extra high at this time, be more vigilant than usual. Double-check your mirrors and blind spots. Use your blinkers, even when changing lanes. Focus on safety to reduce your personal risk.
Rush Hour Wreck Compensation
Even using these tips doesn't mean you can always avoid car accidents in rush hour traffic. When another driver causes the wreck, you need to know your rights to compensation.
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