What is Defensive Driving ?
The standard Safe Practices for Motor Vehicle Operations, ANSI/ASSE Z15.1, defines defensive driving skills as "driving to save lives, time, and money, in spite of the conditions around you and the actions of others."
This definition is taken from the National Safety Council's Defensive Driving Course. It is a form of training for motor vehicle drivers that goes beyond mastery of the rules of the road and the basic mechanics of driving. Its aim is to reduce the risk of collision by anticipating dangerous situations, despite adverse conditions or the mistakes of others.
This can be achieved through adherence to a variety of general guidelines, such as following the assured clear distance ahead and two second rules, as well as the practice of specific driving techniques. Some motorists describe defensive driving as, "driving as if everyone else on the road was drunk."
Driving defensively includes:
Controlling your speed.
Looking ahead and expecting the unexpected.
Being alert and distraction free.
Regarding other participants in traffic:
Preparedness for all sorts of actions and reactions of other drivers and pedestrians.
Not expecting the other drivers to do what you would ordinarily do.
Watching and respecting other drivers.
Regarding your own vehicle:
Maintaining a safe following distance.
Driving safely considering (adjusting for) weather and/or road conditions.
Adjusting your speed before entering a bend, in order to avoid applying the brakes in the middle of a bend.
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