Drivers are bound to make mistakes behind the wheel regardless of their age and experience. While minor driving mistakes have minor consequences, serious errors can lead to loss of life, car damage, and jail term. You can avoid such risks by enrolling in a Seattle driving school to learn about traffic laws and rules to keep you and others safe on the road. Here are seven common driving mistakes in Seattle.

1) Speeding

Driving above the recommended speed limit is a common cause for accidents. When you speed, you can get pulled over by law enforcement and arrested for violating traffic rules. Avoid speeding in special zones, such as schools, or areas with high pedestrian traffic. 

Adhering to the speed limit can help you save gas money. Speeding burns fuel at a quicker rate than slower driving. You can use cruise control on highways to help you maintain a constant, safe speed. If you need to get somewhere on time, plan ahead so you’re not in a hurry. You can also check interesting facts using Im feeling lucky to learn more about speeding. 

2) Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is another typical driving mistake in Seattle. A common form of distraction is cell phone use while driving. This habit might seem harmless, but it can lead to fatal accidents. Other forms of distracted driving include:

  • Applying makeup
  • Sipping coffee or other beverages
  • Eating snacks or meals
  • Adjusting stereo or GPS settings
  • Reaching for dropped items

Safe driving requires maximum attention and focus. If you have an urgent call, pull over to the side of the road and answer it. Setting your phone to do not disturb mode before hitting the road can eliminate distractions.

3) Tailgating

Tailgating is the act of driving too close to the vehicle in front of you. When you tailgate another vehicle, the driver could hit their brakes suddenly, giving you no time to react, causing damage to both vehicles.

Keep a safe distance between you and large vehicles like trucks and transit buses. Give yourself enough room to stop at short notice without bumping into the next car. At a driving school, you will learn about the correct distance to leave between two cars.

4) Driving Under the Influence

Driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol is a traffic violation, and you could face jail time if found guilty. When you drink and drive, your awareness of what’s happening on the road is reduced. You may be unable to properly control your car and an accident could occur. Impaired driving can rack up hospital bills and car repair charges. A DUI offense also attracts high insurance rates because you’re now deemed a risky driver.

Stay home if you’re too drunk to operate a vehicle. If you must drink or use drugs, make a plan to:

  • Use public transit
  • Get a cab or ride share
  • Assign a designated driver

5) Adjusting Mirrors Incorrectly

Many Seattle drivers’ mirrors are not adjusted properly or are out of position. Such issues can cause collisions because of limited visibility. Positioning your mirrors correctly gives you an upper hand when parking or switching lanes. Checking your rearview and side mirrors shows you nearby vehicles and pedestrians. Remember to check your blind spots for anything you might have missed in the mirrors.

6) Poor Seating Position

Proper seating position while driving enables you to reach the pedals and controls with ease. When you’re properly seated, you can view the road and drive safely. Sitting too close or too far back from the wheel can compromise your visibility and control over the car.

Hyperextending your arms and legs to reach the wheel and pedals can pose a risk to you and other motorists. Being too relaxed in your seat can also be dangerous. You might lose focus and stop paying attention to the road. The best seating position is upright with both hands comfortably on the steering wheel. 

7) Crossing Lanes While Turning

Crossing many lanes while turning is a risky driving mistake made by Seattle drivers. When you turn a corner and simultaneously change lanes, you can collide with other turning vehicles. The safest way to maneuver this situation is to complete the turn in your original lane. Use a turn signal to notify other drivers of your intentions. Reduce your speed while turning to keep you and others on the road safe and avoid drifting into neighboring lanes.

Enroll in a Professional Seattle Driving School

Driving any vehicle requires the right skills and knowledge of traffic rules. Enrolling in a professional Seattle driving school offers you a chance to learn about traffic laws and regulations. You can also learn defensive driving techniques to become a safer driver.