The New Year is here, so it’s time to make resolutions. New Year’s resolutions are typically about self-improvement. Most people focus on healthier choices like working out more and eating or drinking less. Some people resolve to practice journaling or engage in more intense self-reflection. However, did you know there is one New Year’s resolution you can make to better yourself and protect others? You can resolve to be a better driver in 2024.
At Finz & Finz, P.C., we have a list of safe-driving resolutions to help make your New Year safe, better, and brighter.
Resolve to Put the Brakes on Distracted Driving
The Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee says distracted driving is the number one contributing factor to motor vehicle crashes in New York. One study ranks New York as one of the top ten states in the nation for fatal distracted driving-related crashes. In 2024, choose to be a safer driver and avoid distracted driving. That means putting down the phone. Stop texting and avoid engaging in other dangerous or distracting behaviors while driving.
However, avoiding distractions in the car is easier said than done. Distractions are anything that takes your hands, eyes, or minds away from the safe operation of your vehicle. Take time to consider your actions before you start your car. Don’t eat, drink, or groom yourself while in the car. Avoid listening to loud music behind the wheel or engaging in loud or distracting conversations with passengers. Focus your attention on the road and not your to-do list.
You can also put the brakes on distracted driving by leaving your phone in your purse or pocket. You can also lock your phone in the glovebox or place it in the back seat where you won’t be tempted to reach for it while driving. Numerous safe driving apps on the market can help you stop texting and driving. You can find these apps on the Apple and Android app stores, which may be helpful tools to help you avoid using your phone while driving.
Resolve to Never Drink and Drive
New Year’s Day is one of the worst times for drunk driving accidents. Some statistics show that over the New Year holiday period, 40 percent of car accident fatalities involved an alcohol-impaired driver. You can protect yourself and others this New Year’s holiday and every other day of the year by choosing to avoid drinking and driving. That doesn’t mean you can’t have a good time, but you need to plan when you want to let loose and enjoy a few cocktails.
If you want to enjoy a night on the town, designate a sober driver for the evening to help you get home. New York is great for pedestrians and has many other transportation options if you can’t walk home. Consider taxiing or calling a ridesharing service. The subway is also an excellent option to get you home after a long night out with friends. If those options don’t work for you, ask a friend if you can stay the night. There is no excuse for drinking and driving with the number of options available to New Yorkers to help them make it home safely.
Resolve to Follow the Speed Limit
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that speeding killed at least 12,330 in one year. It is also a contributing factor in at least 29 percent of all traffic fatalities in the U.S. This New Year, resolve to be a safer driver by following the speed limit. Sitting in New York traffic can be frustrating. Many drivers turn to speed to help them make it to where they are going on time after being stuck in traffic jams. Plan accordingly to help avoid speeding. Leave a few minutes early to make it to your destination on time or check traffic conditions before you leave home so you know what to expect.
Resolve to Manage Your Temper
Unfortunately, news headlines about deadly altercations with aggressive drivers are becoming more commonplace. Resolve to be a better driver in 2024 by learning to manage your temper and avoid aggressive encounters with other potentially dangerous drivers. If a driver cuts you off or engages in aggressive driving behaviors, breathe, and keep your composure. Do not make rude or offensive gestures, shout at the other driver, or attempt to engage in aggressive driving behaviors. Does the other driver have a weapon? Are they willing to crash into you or run you off the road? There is no way to know. Protect yourself and do not engage with the other motorist.
Contact law enforcement if the aggressive motorist attempts to follow you or you feel threatened by their behavior. Do not attempt to stop and talk to the other driver. Do not lead the other driver to your home or place of employment. If they do not leave you alone, drive to a safe, public location like a firehouse or police station. It is always better to leave an aggressive driver to their anger than to engage with them and end up in a potentially dangerous or fatal situation.
Resolve to Take Better Care of Your Vehicle
It is easy to forget to take care of your vehicle, especially in New York, if you don’t drive daily. In 2024, resolve to take better care of your car or motorcycle by scheduling regular maintenance and tire inspections to keep your vehicle in tip-top shape. Worn tires, broken or malfunctioning lights, and degraded windshield wiper blades can compromise the safety of your vehicle and lead to a tragic accident. Take care of your car, and it will take care of you.
Injured in a New York Car Accident? Contact an Attorney for Help
When a careless New York motorist fails to uphold their New Year’s resolution and causes a significant accident, it is time to discuss your options with an experienced New York City car accident lawyer. At Finz & Finz P.C., we have an extensive track record of helping New York car accident victims pursue the compensation they deserve.
Contact our New York office today by calling (855) TOP-FIRM to request a free legal consultation with one of our knowledgeable attorneys.