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6 Safe Driving Tips In Ellsworth Maine

6 Safe Driving Tips In Ellsworth Maine

Brunette woman intently watching the road while driving her car, being alert is safe driving tip number one.
Being attentive while driving is the best safe driving tip.

Ellsworth is one of Maine’s fastest growing cities, with a land mass of over 79 square miles the potential for greater development is possible. Ellsworth has seen consistent growth and development over the last years.This progress has produced an increase in traffic and traffic related accidents. So how do you stay safe on Ellsworth’s streets and roads? Follow these six safe driving tips to avoid traffic accidents.

#1 Safe Driving Tip: Distracted Driving Numbers Rise

Stay alert, put away the distractions. Things like cell phones, umpiring the argument in the backseat, checking your hair or putting on makeup while driving, all lead to your attention being on something other than the road. Remain alert and aware of your surroundings at all times. If the distraction demands your attention, pull off the road, deal with the situation before you continue driving. Being distracted is the leading cause of traffic accidents.

#2 Safe Driving Tip: Safe Travel Distances

Space, space can save lives. Leaving enough room between your vehicle and the one in front of you can make a huge difference when avoiding a traffic accident.  The average person requires 0.25 seconds to react to a situation. The few extra seconds of space between your vehicle and the one in front of you, allows you the time to react and avoid a collision. 

#3 Safe Driving Tip: Looking Ahead

Looking ahead and not just at what’s immediately in front of you is a great defensive driving skill. Watch three or four cars ahead of you for telltale signs of brake lights or upcoming turns. Seeing the whole picture of what’s going on around you can help you make better driving decisions. This forewarning of traffic changes will help you safely navigate the roads.

#4 Safe Driving Tip: Enter and Exit Safely

When entering traffic flow or crossing lanes to exit the road, be aware of the speed vehicles are traveling. Allow enough time for you to enter or exit the highway safely without hesitation.  When in doubt don’t pull out! Intersections create their own hazard zones. Expect the unexpected when approaching an intersection and slow down. Racing the yellow light to make it through the intersection can turn into a bad situation quickly. 

#5 Safe Driving Tip: Safe Speed For Current Road Conditions

Speed plays an important role in safety. When the road conditions are less than optimal, slow down. Water, snow, wet leaves, dense fog and other road conditions warrant slowing your speed. Hydroplaning on a wet road can be avoided easily with a reduction in speed. No matter how good your tires are if you are going too fast on wet roads your tires will lose traction causing you to hydroplane out of control. 

#6 Safe Driving Tip: Proper Two Way Turning Lane Usage

Ellsworth now has several two way turning lanes aka suicide lanes. These were designed to help traffic flow, they are not passing lanes. How do they work? When a motorist has to cross over the oncoming traffic lane they can safely move into the two way turning lane allowing the traffic behind them to continue and allowing them the freedom to wait for an appropriate break in the flow of oncoming traffic to cross safely. Using the lane inappropriately is dangerous. Not using this designated lane to turn but dashing across all the lanes can result in a collision. Using it to pass a slow motorist is an inappropriate use of the two way turn lane! If a motorist pulls into the lane and leaves the back half of their vehicle in the travel lane it becomes a huge target for an accident. 

Proper Use of Two Way Turning Lane Explained

The proper way to use the two way turn lane is to turn into the lane before your exit point keeping all of your vehicle in the two way turning lane, allowing traffic to keep flowing on either side of your vehicle. This can help you when you need to cross a lane to enter traffic flow. First, pull across the first lane of traffic into the two way turn lane. Next, wait for a break to pull into the flow of the traffic headed in the direction you need to go. Therefore, saving you the time and risk of waiting for traffic to be clear in both directions then shooting across to the correct lane. In other words, if used properly the two way turn lane is the safest option for entering or exiting the road.

There are hundreds of scenarios that can arise on a drive from being caught in another driver’s blind spot during a lane change, to having the sun obliterate your vision. Each one has the potential to end in a collision. What you do and how you react will alter that possibility. Being alert at all times is your number one defense against a tragedy. Be aware of what is happening ahead of you on the road. Drive like everyone else on the road is on their maiden voyage with a learners permit. Becoming complacent and thinking everyone has driving skills and road manners like you do is a big mistake. Ellsworth is a fast growing community with increased traffic possibilities for years to come, so stay alert and be safe. 

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