Safe2Drive Blog

11/17/2020

Online Ohio Driver Education

by Courtney Conley

Many parts of our lives are more difficult during a pandemic. Luckily, driver education is still possible, even from home! Safe2Drive’s online Ohio Driver Education course is engaging, user-friendly, and completed online! In order to earn a driver’s license, Ohio teens under the age of 18 must complete 24 hours of classroom instruction and 8 hours of driving instruction with a professional driving school. Safe2Drive’s online Ohio Driver Education course satisfies the 24 hours of classroom instruction component of driver education.

Licensed Teen Driver

How to Earn your Driver’s License in Ohio (GDL Program)

If you’re eager to start driving, our course can help! Ohio follows a Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) program for Ohio residents under age 18. This means that there are different stages of licenses. Each stage leading up to a full driver license has certain restrictions, and there are certain requirements you must meet to qualify for each stage of licensure. The purpose of Ohio’s GDL program is to keep everyone on the road safe. New drivers, especially teen drivers, are at a higher risk of being involved in a collision than older, more experienced drivers. The GDL program allows young drivers to gain experience gradually over time with certain safeguards in place to help reduce their risk.

The first step in the GDL program is the Temporary Instruction Permit Identification Card (TIPIC). Teens must meet certain requirements in order to earn their TIPIC, including being at least 15 years and 6 months old.

Once you have held your TIPIC for at least six months, you can move to the second step of the GDL program: driver licensing. To apply for your driver license, you must:

  • Hold your TIPIC for at least 6 months
  • Complete a driver education requirement, which includes 24 hours of classroom or online instruction and 8 hours driving time with a professional driving instructor. You must provide a Certificate of Completion to verify you have completed the driver education requirement. Safe2Drive’s course satisfies the 24 hours of required classroom instruction. You will also need to complete the required 8 hours of driving instruction with a professional behind-the-wheel driving school. You can find a list of approved driving schools on the Ohio DPS Driver Training website.
  • Complete 50 hours of practice driving with a parent or guardian, with at least 10 hours of night driving. These 50 hours of practice driving must be verified with a notarized affidavit signed by your parent or guardian.
  • Pass a driving skills test.
  • Submit an application for a driver license at a driver exam station.
  • You must provide documentary proof of your full legal name, your date of birth, your Social Security Number, and your citizenship or legal presence. If you are under age 18, the application must be co-signed by a parent or legal guardian when you submit the application and the co-signer must present either a valid Ohio driver license or a valid Ohio ID.
Licensed Teen Driver

Why Safe2Drive?

When it’s time to choose an online driver education course, we hope you choose Safe2Drive! If reading about driving for 24 hours stresses you out, we understand! That’s why we’ve made our course interactive and full of videos, animations, games, and stories. Our class is completed online, so you won’t spend any time sitting in a classroom. Per Ohio’s requirements, you can complete up to 4 hours of coursework per day. You can complete the course on your laptop, smart phone, or tablet - any device with an internet connection! Learn at your own pace from wherever you’re most comfortable.

We hope you’ll consider taking our online Ohio Driver Education course! If you have any questions, our awesome customer support team is here for you 7 days a week. If you would like more information on our course, please check out our website.

Click here to register for our Ohio Driver Education course!

Many parts of our lives are more difficult during a pandemic. Luckily, driver education is still possible, even from home! Safe2Drive’s online Ohio Driver Education course is engaging, user-friendly, and completed online! In order to earn a driver’s license, Ohio teens under the age of 18 must complete 24 hours of classroom instruction and 8 hours of driving instruction with a professional driving school. Safe2Drive’s online Ohio Driver Education course satisfies the 24 hours of classroom instruction component of driver education.

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11/16/2020

Adopt a Senior Pet Month

by Courtney Conley
Dog in Car

November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month! Any pet lover can tell you how special it is to welcome a new pet into your home. Senior pets have a harder time finding a home, and they tend to spend a longer time in shelters and rescues before finding their forever home. Many senior pets are never adopted.

There are many benefits to adopting a senior pet. Older cats and dogs are usually already housetrained. Adopting a senior pet also takes the guesswork out of how large the animal will become and what their personalities will be like, as these traits are already developed in senior animals. If you're considering adopting a senior pet, November is an excellent time to do so! Bringing home a new pet during the holiday season is sure to bring joy to your home.

Of course, once you adopt your pet, you will need to bring them back to your home, and often this is done by driving. The truth is, traveling with a pet can be distracting and dangerous. Distracted driving claimed 2,841 lives in 2018 alone.

According to a survey sponsored by AAA, 65% of respondents participated in a distracted driving activity while driving with a dog.

With distracted driving being such a common issue across the country, many states have new distracted driving laws. The laws vary depending on the state you’re in, but in general, it’s prohibited to drive while distracted. Some states have specific laws about traveling with pets. For example, it’s common for states to prohibit drivers from driving with a pet on their lap. A few states even require pets to be secured in a carrier or wear a seat belt. Make sure you’re familiar with the laws in your state before you get in the car with your pet.

If you are traveling with a pet, make sure they are secured. Pets can be secured in a crate in the back of your vehicle (not an enclosed trunk space) or on the back seat. You could also purchase a harness that secures your pet using the seat belts in the back seat. That way, your pet is secure in the event of a collision, and isn’t trying to cuddle up on your lap while you drive, possibly causing a collision.

If you're ready to adopt a new pet, consider adopting a senior pet! Just remember to always travel safely with your pets, regardless of their ages. If you’d like to learn more about traffic safety topics like this, visit our website to find an online course in your state!

November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month! Any pet lover can tell you how special it is to welcome a new pet into your home. Senior pets have a harder time finding a home, and they tend to spend a longer time in shelters and rescues before finding their forever home. Many senior pets are never adopted.

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11/9/2020

How to Plan a Perfect Trip

by Courtney Conley
Trip

November 8-14 is Geography Awareness Week! What better way to celebrate than to learn a little about trip planning? Whether you’re heading off on a vacation, going on a trip to visit family, or just going to the grocery store, it’s important that you plan ahead before hitting the road. What route will you take? What roads should you avoid due to traffic or construction? Where will you stop and stay along the way? And what are your emergency plans for those things you don’t expect to happen, like losing your keys or breaking down in the middle of nowhere?

Trip planning is the preparation you do to make sure you arrive at your destination safely, including choosing the best route, looking at a map and GPS, getting your vehicle serviced, and packing your vehicle. There are three things to keep in mind while trip planning:

1. Determine the best route.

Whether you’re going on a short trip across town or taking off on a long-distance road trip, you still need to determine the best route to get to your destination. Before hitting the road, consider the following

  • Construction and road conditions. The shortest, most direct route won’t always get you where you’re going the quickest. Sometimes road conditions and construction can slow you down or even block your intended route. In this case, going a little out of your way to avoid these conditions might be your best bet.
  • Time of day and traffic. Traffic is usually at its worst during rush hour (6 AM to 9 AM in the morning and 4 PM to 7 PM at night) when people are commuting to and from work and school. Of course, it’s not always possible to avoid driving during these times, but if you have the option, traveling at a different time of day will be much less of a hassle. If you’re on a long road trip, try to time your trip so you’re not going through major cities during these hours.
  • Surface roads or freeways. Consider using highways, freeways, or interstates. These roads have higher speed limits and no intersections or traffic signals to slow you down. If you’re on a long-distance trip, you’ll probably spend most of your time on the freeway.

2. Use your GPS safely.

While using your phone or a GPS system for a road trip is convenient, it can also be distracting. Follow these tips for safely using a GPS system or GPS app on the road:

  • Keep your field of vision clear. Some vehicles have a GPS device already installed in a convenient location. If you are using a GPS device or your smart phone, make sure it is mounted securely at eye-level and is not blocking your view of the roadway. You should never hold your GPS device or your phone in your hand, on your lap, or on the passenger seat. If you’re using your phone as a GPS, be sure to silence notifications or enable "Do Not Disturb," so you do not become distracted by the phone while driving.
  • Keep your maps updated. Roads and conditions are always changing. It’s important to be sure that the GPS you’re using is up-to-date and accurate. Keep in mind that there may be discrepancies, or differences, between technology and the actual road, and always stay alert to your surroundings.
  • Activate voice directions. You may need to reroute or change your destination once you’re already on the road. Maybe you’re three hours into a road trip and want to find the nearest fast food restaurant. You should never manually adjust your GPS while driving. In fact, many GPS devices prohibit it when the vehicle is in motion. A safer alternative is to activate voice directions so your eyes never leave the road.

3. Calculate the cost of your trip ahead of time.

There are a number of considerations that go into calculating the cost of a trip. It’s best to plan ahead so you can be ready for anything. The basic costs for any trip include:

  • Lodging
  • Meals
  • Tolls
  • Fuel

Prices for lodging usually run higher during peak vacation periods, but family-oriented chain hotels and motels often offer rooms at around $90 to $150 per night. If you plan on staying with friends or family, be sure to check with them well ahead of time. Don’t leave your plans to the last minute unless you have no choice. Estimates for food vary, depending on how much and what kind of food you like to eat and where you are traveling. It can be helpful to pre-plan all of your meal stops.

You will find wide variations in the cost of fuel. Check the prices in your area for an estimate. Prices per location are often available online. Fuel costs can be estimated by figuring the number of miles you will be driving and adding 50 to 100 miles to cover local travel and side trips. The miles to and from your destination can be determined using your map or an online source.

Once you know how many miles you plan to travel, divide the number by the average miles per gallon (MPG) that you get with the vehicle you will be driving. Then, multiply the cost of gas per gallon by the number of gallons you’ll use.

Planning a trip is a great way to celebrate Geography Awareness Week! We hope these tips help you on your next trip. If you’d like to learn more about traffic safety, and see which online courses we offer in your state, visit our website!

November 8-14 is Geography Awareness Week! What better way to celebrate than to learn a little about trip planning? Whether you’re heading off on a vacation, going on a trip to visit family, or just going to the grocery store, it’s important that you plan ahead before hitting the road. What route will you take? What roads should you avoid due to traffic or construction? Where will you stop and stay along the way? And what are your emergency plans for those things you don’t expect to happen, like losing your keys or breaking down in the middle of nowhere?

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11/2/2020

Drowsy Driving Prevention Week

by Courtney Conley
Night Driving

The first week of November is Drowsy Driving Prevention week! Drowsy driving caused 795 deaths in 2017 alone. Many of us have been guilty of drowsy driving at some point in our driving careers. A study conducted by the National Sleep Foundation found that more than 40% of drivers admitted to falling asleep behind the wheel at least once. This week, the National Sleep Foundation hopes to raise awareness about the dangers of drowsy driving, and how to prevent drowsy driving.

Fatigue and drowsiness are the principal causes of approximately 100,000 reported crashes each year. Annually, more than 40,000 people suffer injuries and 1,500 die from collisions involving a driver falling asleep at the wheel. These statistics are conservative estimates since many collisions involving fatigue or drowsiness go unreported.

Fatigue or drowsy driving can negatively impact your driving, even if you don’t actually fall asleep behind the wheel. Get enough sleep at night, and if you are too tired to drive, don’t get behind the wheel. If you’re on a long drive far from home and you’re tired, pull over in a safe place and take a quick nap. Take frequent breaks every hour or two on long trips.

Characteristics of Fatigued Drivers

If you think about it, it makes perfect sense why driving while tired is dangerous. Fatigued drivers are often inattentive and lack focus. They take too long to make decisions. They’re irritable, frustrated and impatient. They swerve and sway while driving. All of these behaviors are extremely hazardous on the road. In fact, studies have shown that people who drive after not sleeping for 18 hours perform worse on the road than people whose blood alcohol content (BAC) is .05%. Going 24 hours without sleep and getting behind the wheel of a car is equivalent to driving with a BAC of .10%.

Causes of Fatigue

The biggest cause of fatigue is, of course, not getting enough sleep. Young people ages 12 to 18 need an average of 8.5 to 10 hours of sleep per night, and adults 18 years of age and older need an average of 7.5 to 9 hours of sleep. Even if you are getting the recommended amount of sleep each night, the quality of sleep that you get is just as important. You go through several stages while asleep: light sleep, which typically makes up the majority of your night and promotes mental and physical restoration; deep sleep, which helps with physical recovery, aspects of memory, and learning; and REM sleep, the stage where dreams are most vivid, which typically occurs later at night and is important for your memory and mood. In order to ensure that you’re spending enough time in each of these stages and getting the quality of sleep you need, do the following:

  1. Eliminate outside noise that could wake or disturb you. Wear earplugs if necessary. Sleeping with white noise or other soothing ambient sounds can help you sleep as well.
  2. Sleep in a dark room with the television off. Your body has an internal clock that drives your circadian rhythms (i.e. your daily cycle of sleeping and waking). This internal clock takes its cues from your environment. Your body produces melatonin when it’s dark out to help you sleep, but daylight and artificial lights (such as those from a television or laptop screen) can suppress your body’s production of this hormone, making it difficult to fall asleep and stay asleep.
  3. Don’t smoke or drink alcohol. Avoid caffeine in the afternoon and evening. These substances actually disrupt deep sleep.

Clearly, it’s best to avoid drowsy driving. Get enough sleep at night, and if you are too tired to drive, don’t get behind the wheel. If you’re on a long drive far from home and you’re tired, pull over in a safe place and take a quick nap. Take frequent breaks every hour or two on long trips, and make sure to encourage those around you to avoid drowsy driving, too!

If you’d like to learn more about traffic safety, and see which online courses we offer in your state, visit our website!

The first week of November is Drowsy Driving Prevention week! Drowsy driving caused 795 deaths in 2017 alone. Many of us have been guilty of drowsy driving at some point in our driving careers. A study conducted by the National Sleep Foundation found that more than 40% of drivers admitted to falling asleep behind the wheel at least once. This week, the National Sleep Foundation hopes to raise awareness about the dangers of drowsy driving, and how to prevent drowsy driving.

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