Brighten your driving skills this spring

If you’ve been stuck in a winter driving rut, venturing out only for your routine commute to work or to collect the kids from school, there’s a good chance your skills have become stale.

With the warmer months approaching, many drivers start to venture further afield, enjoying a day trip or vacation to unfamiliar territory. Here are five tips to help refresh your skills in time for spring from the NRMA Safer Driving School’s Simon Tracy.*

1. Assess your blind spots

“Blind spots are a big hazard, particularly if people are towing a caravan and are not used to those conditions,” Tracy says. Take time to re-examine where your blind spots are. Before heading off, ask someone to stand alongside your stationary vehicle so you can work out the danger zones.

2. Seconds count

Many drivers only leave one second between themselves and the car in front rather than the recommended three seconds. That can have serious consequences if you need to stop suddenly.

“If another car moves into your three-second space, reduce acceleration each time. Overkill? Well, no. Let’s say you were forced to add three seconds for other cars 100 times on the one trip – you’d arrive just five minutes later.”

3. Slow down and take your time

Try slicing a few kilometres per hour off your maximum speed. After all, what’s the rush? “Traveling even a few km/h over the legal limit is unsafe. You have less time to react to conditions and less time to make the right decisions.”

4. Drive to the conditions

Be aware of changing weather conditions. “The weather can play a big part in safe driving. Changes in season could mean sudden rain or unexpected glare.”

With the sun behind your vehicle, you may have good visibility, but the oncoming traffic driving into the sun won’t – so be aware.

5. Maintenance saves

You might be tempted to dust off a car that hasn’t been used in a while. Before you take it out onto the road, however, book in for a service and check the tyre pressure, oil and water. “You’ll have less wear and tear, better economy and your trip will be safer.”

The same goes for those with a beloved old vehicle. Passionate owners and drivers might take that classic car out for a longer drive this season. Ensure your Veteran, Vintage & Classic Vehicle Insurance is as up to date as you expect it to be.

Stay safe in spring and summer by taking the time to refresh your skills, check over your vehicle and be aware of other drivers on the road. And most of all, enjoy those long summer road trips!

SGIC offers a great range of car insurance, including cover for veteran, vintage & classic vehicles, that you can rely on for quality protection wherever the road takes you.

*NRMA Safer Driving Schools are provided by NRMA Motoring & Services which is separate and independent from NRMA Insurance.

Cover is subject to standard underwriting guidelines and policy terms. To see if our insurance is right for you, always read the Product Disclosure Statement from the product issuer, Insurance Australia Limited ABN 11 000 016 722 trading as SGIC.