Here are 10 driving tips for Indian highways!

TRAVELING IN INDIA - TIPS

SUNIL

7/7/20232 min read

Highways evoke images of blue skies, trees swaying in the wind, smooth roads, and joyous anticipation. Highways evoke the holiday spirit. It doesn't mean you should ignore safety rules when driving on highways. India is notorious for its road accident figures, clocking the highest incidence in the world and the highest fatalities. India recorded 1,55,622 Road Accident Deaths In 2022.

Hence, while highway driving is mostly pleasant and relaxing, things can quickly turn sour. It’s best to follow some basic driving tips, to stay safe:

1. Inspection prior to driving

Ensure your tyres are filled to the correct pressure, and that you have a functional spare one. Keep your documents handy, such as car insurance policy documents, pollution certificate, and registration papers. And finally, have your driver’s license on your person. Carry water, torchlight, portable chargers, a first-aid kit, and some tools that will help you change a tyre, if necessary.

2. Maintain a constant speed

Unpredictability is a major reason behind calamities on the highway. So, when you’re cruising down the road, stick to a certain speed (below the speed limit). Constant acceleration and deceleration will result in an uncomfortable ride and will also put other vehicles around you at risk. Stay below the speed limit as it’s been assigned after research. Lower your speed at night and during wet road conditions to make it easier to take preventive action, if needed.

3. Pick a lane

Pick a lane and stick to it. Stay on the left lane if you’re not confident with high speeds. The right-most lane is the fastest lane and should be used for overtaking vehicles. When switching between lanes, use the turn indicator to let others around you know what you’re about to do. Ensure there’s a healthy gap in the overtaking lane before you accelerate to overtake.

4. Keep your distance

At high speeds, stopping the car requires more aggressive braking, and faster reaction time while the consequences are also more severe. Keep a minimum of 3 seconds’ worth distance with the car in front of you. Pick a stationary item on the road as a marker. Pass that marker three seconds after the car in front of you has passed it. In rainy conditions, you can increase that gap to at least 5 seconds.

5. Overtaking

On highways without a divider, overtaking a vehicle is when you’re most vulnerable. There are several things you need to be aware of, and it all needs to happen swiftly. Follow the car you intend to overtake at their speed. Find a straight line as the point of overtake, so that there’s clear visibility of incoming traffic. Switch to the overtaking lane with your indicator on. Switch to a lower gear and accelerate. Build a car’s length distance with the overtaken car and switch back to the driving lane.

6. Night-time driving

Avoid night-time driving like the plague. Truckers can get drowsy, and rowdy, and may be slow to react. Your visibility will be impaired, as most drivers have the high beam on, blinding vehicles coming towards them, making it an all-around risky proposition. However, if you must drive at night, take the slow lane and be patient with all your moves. However, when overtaking, be decisive, switch to the level headlamps with your turn indicators, and then overtake. Keep your windscreen clean to ensure optimum visibility.

Conclusion

Driving on the highway is synonymous with the holiday spirit, and to keep it enjoyable, it’s essential to follow these driving tips. Highways can turn lethal in a split second if proper care is not taken. And remember, if you’re not confident, don’t feel pressured to pull off a move. Enjoy the ride and get to your destination – that’s most important. And if possible, have a more experienced friend by your side for comfort and confidence.

Source: https://www.carandbike.com/news/india-records-1-55-622-road-accident-deaths-in-2022-3204563

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