What is Defensive Driving and how to Practice it?

What is Defensive Driving and how to Practice it?

Defensive driving is a driving technique to anticipate hazards and minimise road accidents. Defensive driving help drivers spot potential hazards effectively and avoid danger by practising defensive driving techniques. There are 3 key areas to defensive driving; general principles, regarding other vehicles on the road, and your own vehicle. In this article, we will highlight some of the techniques from each area so you can practice these and stay safe on the road while driving Pan Pac commercial vehicles.

Control your speed

Always keep to the maximum speed limit of each area. In fact, speed limits are for ideal conditions. In bad weather or heavy traffic conditions, decrease your speed below the speed limit so you can have greater control of your vehicle if there is an emergency. To maintain control of your vehicle, you must maintain control of your speed.

Be alert and distraction free

The golden rule of driving is to always keep your eyes on the road. This includes not being distracted by anything that will take your attention away from the road, such as using the phone, eating, turning your head to speak to passengers in the car and even tuning the radio. While these should all be avoided whenever you are driving a truck in Singapore, it is even more important when you are in hazardous conditions such as bad weather and roads with heavy pedestrian traffic.

Avoid engaging with aggressive drivers

You might sometimes encounter drivers who honk or stare at you and in some instances even show rude finger signs! Do not engage with such drivers. Keep calm and your attention on the road and carry on to your destination. Confrontation can be dangerous as you don’t know the state the other person might be in such as being intoxicated or a poor mental state. Here are a few common road rage examples and what you should do:

  1. If a drive is tailgating you, let them know they’re not maintaining a safe distance by tapping your brakes two or three times. If they don’t back off then gradually slow down and allow the driver to overtake.
  2. If a car is speeding or changing lanes in an aggressive manner, maintain your speed whilst remaining in your lane. When safe, move to the left lane and fall back to allow more space behind the driver ahead so that the speeding driver can safely overtake you.
  3. In any case, whenever you see a vehicle being driven aggressively, avoid them by either slowing down or pulling over.

Keep your distance

Did you know that the greatest chance of collision is with the vehicle in front of you? Use the 3- to 4-second rule to maintain a safe following distance and provide adequate time for you to brake if the vehicle in front of you breaks suddenly. When driving your commercial vehicle in Singapore during bad weather, increase your following distance by an additional second.

It’s important that your fleet drivers are well versed in defensive driving as these techniques can help avoid accidents, which can be a disruption to your business operations. Carry out regular trainings on defensive driving for your team, and consider sending your drivers for the defensive driving course so they can be officially certified and be safer drivers.

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