How to Identify a Dangerous Driver

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

distracted driverEven if you are a responsible driver that drives carefully and obeys all the rules of the road, there is no guarantee that you will reach your destination safely. You share the road with many drivers who are irresponsible, distracted or just outright dangerous. How can you spot dangerous drivers to avoid on the roads?

  • Some dangerous drivers are easy to spot. Their actions give them away quite clearly. For example, if you see someone push into lanes in front of other vehicles, drive across red traffic lights or rush across a railway crossing to beat a train, call the local traffic department to report it immediately. Such drivers obviously threaten their passengers and other road users.

  • Other transgressions are equally dangerous but more subtle. If a vehicle wanders slightly about the road, it might be due to distraction, fatigue or alcohol. It is prudent to avoid such vehicles, even if they generally seem under control.

  • If you can see that a driver is looking elsewhere or has only one hand on the wheel, either fall back or pass quickly. 

  • Even if the driver seems to be in control, steer clear of a car with active children or pets. It is likely that the driver will become fatally distracted by them at some point.

  • Avoid vehicles that seem in a poor physical condition. Smoking exhausts or engines, excessive rust and missing parts all indicate that a vehicle has been poorly maintained. You do not want its steering or brakes to fail while you are driving near it.

  • Keep an adequate distance from vehicles with loads that seem poorly secured. These may be either on roof racks, trailers or on the back of a SUV. If it seems to move or wobble or you can see some objects flying off, signal to the driver, but keep your distance.

  • Pay some attention to the mirrors on other vehicles. If they carry loads that block the rear view mirror, or if their side mirrors are missing or badly angled, the drivers will not be able to see you if you drive behind or beside them.

You can remain safe on the roads only if you think for others too; keep this in mind before you hit the road again.