Safe2Drive Blog

3/1/2021

Sharing the Road with Wildlife

by Courtney Conley

World Wildlife Day is March 3rd. It’s a day to celebrate and raise awareness of the many wild animals and plants in the world. As drivers, we must take special care not to harm wildlife that may find its way onto the roadways. As we move closer to the Spring season, you’re likely to encounter wildlife families on the go. Let’s look at some ways to safely interact with wildlife on the roadways.

Deer

In the spring, deer are out and ready to find lots of food! Does will be giving birth to sweet fawns and will need to eat enough to take care of their babies! If you see deer grazing along the roadside, move closer to the center of the lane, if possible, to give them some space. Deer travel in groups, so when you see one, chances are there are more nearby. When startled, a deer will run, and the others will follow suit.

In areas where deer are prevalent, reduce your speed and give yourself ample time to brake if a deer should enter the roadway. You shouldn’t swerve at the last second to avoid hitting a deer. Brake and hit the deer if you have to. You’re far less likely to be injured by hitting a deer directly than by swerving off the road or into oncoming traffic to avoid hitting one.

In the unfortunate case that you do collide with a deer, move your vehicle to a safe place if possible. Pull to the side of the road and turn on your hazard lights. Call the local police. If the deer is still alive, don’t approach it yourself; wounded deer are unpredictable and can be dangerous. Let the officer who arrives on the scene take care of the next steps.

Slow Down

Another form of wildlife you may find in your path of travel are turtles. Turtles are super active in the late spring and early summer as the weather warms up. Turtles typically do not cause as much damage to your vehicle as a large animal would in the case of a collision, but vehicles can cause a ton of damage to a turtle.

If you’re in a safe location where you can pull over without impeding traffic or putting yourself and others in danger, you may be able to help turtles safely cross the street. Pull over in a safe location and watch closely for traffic. If you’re on a highway or other busy road, it’s probably not safe for you to exit your vehicle.

You should never transport a turtle to another location. Turtles know where they want to go, and your job is simply to help them keep moving in the direction they’re already headed. If you grab a turtle from the middle of the road and put it back on the side where it came from, it’s just going to attempt to cross the road again.

Small aquatic turtles and box turtles are usually easy to pick up. You can grasp them on both sides of their body, right in front of their hind legs, with a firm enough grip that you’re sure not to drop them. Cross the road with them and place them gently back on the ground so they can continue their journey safely.

Snapping turtles, on the other hand, have earned their name and can bite when approached. They have long necks and are usually pretty large! Never attempt to pick up a snapping turtle by its tail, as this can cause severe damage to the turtle. You also want to avoid picking them up on their sides like you would a small turtle, as their necks are long enough that they can reach back and bite you when given the chance! Instead, you can grab the snapping turtle by the back of the shell, above its tail. If the snapping turtle is small enough for you to pick up, you can carry it across the road.

For a large snapping turtle, you may have to lift it up by the back of the shell and gently drag it across the road, being sure to keep it heading in the same direction as it was originally facing. If you have a blanket in your vehicle, you can lift the snapping turtle up by the back of its shell and onto the blanket, and then drag the blanket across the roadway. Just remember that you must keep the turtle facing the same direction as it was facing when you found it.

If you’re uncomfortable with approaching a snapping turtle, that is completely understandable! Call your local wildlife facility or local police department and let them know the turtle is obstructing traffic and needs some help crossing the road.

This spring, keep a sharp eye out for wildlife on the move. Slow down, be alert, and help protect wildlife as much as possible while making sure you’re staying safe.

Want to keep your driving skills and habits up-to-date? Taking an online defensive driving course or an insurance discount course can be a great way to stay ahead of the curve! Click here to visit our website to see the online courses we offer in your state!

World Wildlife Day is March 3rd. It’s a day to celebrate and raise awareness of the many wild animals and plants in the world. As drivers, we must take special care not to harm wildlife that may find its way onto the roadways. As we move closer to the Spring season, you’re likely to encounter wildlife families on the go. Let’s look at some ways to safely interact with wildlife on the roadways.

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2/22/2021

Does Technology Make Us Safer Drivers?

by Courtney Conley

Driving is a lifelong learning experience. As you gain more experience behind the wheel, it may feel like you’ve learned all there is to know. The truth is, the world of driving is constantly changing, especially when it comes to the technology available to us in our vehicles. A study released by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety and the University of Utah found that technology can be particularly difficult for mature drivers; when using in-car technology like a GPS system or the radio, drivers age 55 to 75 took their eyes off the road for about 8 seconds longer than drivers age 21 to 36. Let’s talk about some technology available in newer vehicles, and some ways to avoid becoming distracted by that technology.

Take a look at the chart below. Keep in mind that these features are not available in every vehicle, and some may work a little differently, depending on the make and model of your vehicle. It’s helpful to get an understanding of all available safety features a vehicle has to offer before you buy, lease, or even rent it. That way, you can become familiar with these features before you hit the road.

Safety Features

While these features can assist with making the driving task easier, they can’t replace the driver. Depending on conditions and the system, it may not function perfectly. Factors like dirt collecting on the rearview camera, for example, can alter the effectiveness of some features. It’s still up to you to stay alert and limit your distractions behind the wheel.

A driving distraction is anything that takes your mind or eyes off the road, or your hands off the wheel. Actions like texting or programming a GPS are particularly dangerous because they take your focus and your eyes off the road, as well as at least one hand off the steering wheel.

Distraction

Here are some tips for limiting your distractions on the road:

  • Plan ahead for your drive. Program the GPS, charge your phone and put it on "Do Not Disturb While Driving" mode if you can. Familiarize yourself with the in-car technology features that you may use on your drive. Check your vehicle’s owner manual or the manufacturer’s website for a tutorial on how to use these features, so that you’re not scrambling to learn while you drive.
  • Pull off the road in a safe place if you need to do anything that will take your attention off the driving task.
  • Don’t look at passengers when you talk to them, or talk with your hands. When you need to check the time, radio station, your speed, etc., give it a quick glance, then look at the road again.

Features like backup cameras and lane assist can certainly help us drive safely, but it’s important not to become distracted by the technology in your vehicle. With technology changing and improving every day, there will always be a lot to learn! Keep yourself safe on the road by arming yourself with the information you need before you get behind the wheel. Learning things on the fly when your attention needs to be focused on the road is dangerous.

Want to keep your driving skills and habits up-to-date? Taking an online defensive driving course or an insurance discount course can be a great way to stay ahead of the curve! Click here to visit our website to see the online courses we offer in your state!

Driving is a lifelong learning experience. As you gain more experience behind the wheel, it may feel like you’ve learned all there is to know. The truth is, the world of driving is constantly changing, especially when it comes to the technology available to us in our vehicles. A study released by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety and the University of Utah found that technology can be particularly difficult for mature drivers; when using in-car technology like a GPS system or the radio, drivers age 55 to 75 took their eyes off the road for about 8 seconds longer than drivers age 21 to 36. Let’s talk about some technology available in newer vehicles, and some ways to avoid becoming distracted by that technology.

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2/15/2021

Battery Care in the Winter

by Courtney Conley

February 18th is National Battery Day! This comes at a great time because it’s cold in many parts of the country, and low temperatures can have a negative effect on batteries. Car batteries, for example, get weaker in cold weather. Even though we’re nearing the end of winter, it’s still important to keep an eye on your car’s battery. Here are 4 battery care tips you can use this season!

Jump

1. Park in a garage if possible.

If you can, try to park in a garage, or in another place where your vehicle is less exposed to wind and ice. Cold temperatures weaken your battery, so whenever you can keep it out of extreme weather, do so!

2. Give your battery a moment to "warm up."

After you turn on your vehicle, wait a moment before blasting the heat or turning on the stereo. Your battery will begin to charge once you turn your vehicle on, so waiting a minute before turning on the accessories will give your battery a much-needed boost!

3. Get your battery checked.

It’s super frustrating when you’re heading out for work or to run errands and your car won’t start. That’s why it’s helpful to check your battery before it dies on you. Many auto supplies stores will check your battery for free! That way, if you need a new battery, you’ll be able to replace your old one at your convenience.

4. Keep jumper cables in your car.

Our last tip may seem obvious, but many people forget to keep jumper cables in their vehicle just in case! Jumper cables are pretty affordable, and you’ll need them if your battery dies. Not sure how to jump start your car? Take a look at the tutorial below!

While batteries are on our minds this month, we hope these tips help keep your car’s battery healthy! If your battery does need a jump, hopefully you’ll be prepared for it! If you like learning about traffic safety topics, click here to visit our website to see the online courses we offer in your state!

February 18th is National Battery Day! This comes at a great time because it’s cold in many parts of the country, and low temperatures can have a negative effect on batteries. Car batteries, for example, get weaker in cold weather. Even though we’re nearing the end of winter, it’s still important to keep an eye on your car’s battery. Here are 4 battery care tips you can use this season!

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2/8/2021

All About the Online Florida Basic Driver Improvement Course

by Courtney Conley

Do you want to get a ticket dismissed, keep points off your driving record, or prevent an increase in your insurance premium? Did you receive a court or DHSMV order to take a BDI course? Maybe you just want a fun refresher course to brush up on driving basics and new Florida driving laws? Whatever your reasons, we’re here to help.

Ticket

Our Florida Basic Driver Improvement (BDI) course is approved by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV). We provide a fun and engaging course that will meet your BDI needs. If you’re unsure what a BDI course is or who should take it, you’re in the right place.

BDI stands for Basic Driver Improvement. Our Florida-approved BDI course will help refresh your memory on defensive driving techniques, important Florida laws, what to do in driving emergencies, how to share the road with others, and even more topics!

Our course is completed 100% online, so you don’t have to worry about attending a class in-person. As long as you have an internet connection and a device that can access the internet, you can take our course anywhere!

If you’d like to take a BDI course voluntarily, you can do so if you haven’t elected to take the course within the past 12 months and you don’t have a commercial driver’s license. You’re only able to elect to take a BDI course up to 5 times in your lifetime.

Are you ready to take a BDI course? It’s easy to register for the course! Visit our website to learn more about the course, or to register now!

Do you want to get a ticket dismissed, keep points off your driving record, or prevent an increase in your insurance premium? Did you receive a court or DHSMV order to take a BDI course? Maybe you just want a fun refresher course to brush up on driving basics and new Florida driving laws? Whatever your reasons, we’re here to help.

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