Even if you’re an experienced driver, driving can present numerous challenges that you have to overcome. From people who drive recklessly and disregard the rules of the road to unexpected hazards, you always have to be on your toes to make sure that you can safely navigate these challenges.

Here are some handy tips on how to deal with some more challenging aspects of driving:

Driving at night

Driving at night can be more difficult for any driver, particularly considering that there is vastly reduced visibility compared to the daytime.  You don’t have the advantage of colour and contrast that you get during the daytime, while your long-range view is limited by the distance illuminated by your vehicle’s headlights.  That’s why it is vital to always follow these guidelines when driving at night:

  • Reduce your speed compared to the daytime by at least 10 km/h
  • Make sure your headlights are adjusted and clean before heading out
  • Avoid looking into oncoming traffic as bright lights could make your vision temporarily fuzzy
  • Dim your dashboard lights
  • Get anti-glare lenses if you wear glasses while driving

 Parking

 Parking in public spaces and backing out of parking bays can often prove to be an irritating or even stressful experience. To ensure that you don’t have any mishaps when entering and exiting parking, make sure that you:

  • Make sure that the path to the rear and sides is clear before getting into the vehicle,
  • Check traffic conditions and blind spots in all directions
  • Move the vehicle slowly and carefully at all times
  • Keep your foot firmly on the brake pedal while shifting to reverse
  • Use your front and rear windows and inside and outside mirrors when reversing

 Driving around big trucks

It can be nerve-wracking at times when you encounter large trucks on the road. The drivers of these trucks are faced with limited visibility and large blind areas around them, which ultimately means that they may not be able to see you. It is recommended that you avoid travelling close or alongside a truck and do not pass a truck on the right when approaching an intersection.  You should also ensure that there is plenty of distance between your vehicle and the truck, and when a truck is backing up, do not pass behind it. Bring in: if you can’t see the truck’s mirrors, chances are the driver can’t see your vehicle.

 Dealing with aggressive drivers

 Aggressive drivers and road rage can be some of the greatest challenges to your safety on the road.  The best course of action when dealing with these challenges is to drive “defensively” and avoid aggressive actions yourself. You should also be 100% aware as much as possible of the actions of other drivers and not engage at all with them when they display road rage and/or fits of anger.

 Roundabouts

 Modern roundabouts can be confusing to navigate at times. However, if you follow these basic rules, you should be fine:

  • When entering a roundabout, always yield to traffic on the left, but don’t stop if the way is clear
  • Slow down, watch out for pedestrians and cyclists and be prepared to come to a complete stop if necessary
  • Left turns can be completed by travelling around the central island of the roundabout and exiting on the right

 Left-hand turns

 Left-hand turns can prove to be particularly hazardous, as you are attempting to turn across oncoming traffic. Here are some tips to help you:

  • Yield the right of way to other traffic
  • Signal for the left hand-turn at least 50 metres before you approach the intersection
  • Ensure that there are no other vehicles in your path
  • Allow for plenty of time to manoeuvre your vehicle from a stopped position across the traffic lanes
  • Begin turning when your vehicle’s front wheels are in line with the centre of the street you are entering

 Let Cartrack help you

As a trusted and leading provider of fleet management solutions, Cartrack can provide you with vital data related to either your driving behaviour or that of drivers in your fleet. This knowledge will help you to take appropriate action to improve the way you or your drivers drive on the road.