What is defensive driving?


The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) conducted a 2019 study stating that 36,096 fatalities were attributed to speeding and offensive driving habits. It is no secret that casualties from vehicle accidents are a significant problem in the U.S. Negligence, drunk driving, bad driving habits, and falling asleep at the wheel all contribute to fatalities each and every year. It is essential to learn how to be the safest driver on the road at all times. While the potential risk of getting into an accident will always be present, there are ways to dramatically reduce the risk by implementing defensive driving habits. 


Before driving: 

  • Take a defensive driving course. This is a great way to learn and implement good habits for the road and reduce any potential risks of accidents. 
  • Reconsider driving and get proper rest or treatment if you feel tired, lightheaded, or stressed.
  • Consider periodic hearing and vision tests. Hearing and vision are two of the biggest components to driving safely on the road. These tests are essential if you are visually or hearing impaired.

Driving smart

  • Wear your seatbelt always. 
  • Pay attention to your blind spots. 
  • Avoid using a cellphone and any other distractions.
  • Note flashing lights and emergency vehicles.  
  • Avoid tailgating other vehicles. Doing this will increase the risk of rear-ending someone. 
  • Use signals when turning or changing lanes.
  • Obey speed limits. 
  • Share the road when motorists and cyclists are present. 

Driving in bad weather

  • Take your time getting to your destination. 
  • Avoid driving during high traffic times. The morning and afternoon commutes are prime times for accidents to occur. 
  • Be cognizant of warning signs, hills, and other obstacles, especially in inclement weather.  


Life is full of stressful moments. Driving in traffic is no exception to this fact. However, implementing these defensive driving tips can help alleviate those additional stress factors. For more information and resources, visit hupy.com.


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Jason F. Abraham
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Helping car accident and personal injury victims throughout Wisconsin, Illinois and Iowa since 1993.