With increased traffic volume on our roadways during the summer, the RCMP are advising people who are operating a vehicle on Nova Scotia's highways that the driver’s main job is to Drive!
When motorists are involved in a collision, sometimes the natural tendency is to blame someone or something other than themselves for the cause of the collision. A recent European study showed that 80 per cent of drivers believed that the other party could have done something to prevent the collision and only 5 per cent admitted that they were at fault. The results of the study also suggested that most people considered themselves more skillful and safer than the average driver.
RCMP in Nova Scotia continue to target the four leading causes of collisions: Impaired Driving, Aggressive Driving, Distracted Driving and Speed.
To help ensure you arrive at your destination safely, the Nova Scotia RCMP offer these safe driving tips:
• Plan your trip - check with 511 for road conditions or construction activity.
• Allow plenty of time to get to your destination.
• Allow for adequate rest and take breaks during your travel.
• Wear your seat belt. Seat belt usage is not just for passenger safety; it also helps the driver to maintain control of the vehicle.
• Don't get distracted- Driving is a skill and takes concentration and focus no matter what your age. Keep your eyes on the road and your hands on the wheel.
• Share the road- watch for cyclist and pedestrian traffic. The kids are out of school and vacation season has started for many adults.
• Slow down and keep enough distance from the vehicle in front of you. Tailgating is dangerous and can result in a serious crash.
• Be responsible with your alcohol, both with consuming and transporting.
Let’s look at the alcohol factor more closely. One of the most dangerous things people can do is consume alcohol and operate a vehicle. Police often get asked how many drinks someone can have and still drive legally. The simple answer is that alcohol impairs both your cognitive and motor skills, and gambling with how many drinks you can have and drive is not a risk worth taking. This is especially true of young people who have less experience with alcohol. If you have to ask yourself whether you’re sober enough to drive, it almost always means you are not.
Remember-if you’re drinking:
• You can be charged if you are impaired behind the wheel, even if you have not started to drive.
• Drugs and alcohol together can combine to impair your driving even more; ask your doctor or pharmacist about your prescription medication.
• You will lose your license if caught driving under the influence.
• The Blood Alcohol Content limit in Nova Scotia is 0.08, and the police are diligent about taking action against impaired driving.
• No matter what you blow, if alcohol is determined to be a contributing factor in a collision, you could be charged.
If you think you see an impaired driver, please call 911. When someone drives drunk, they pose a risk to every innocent person and motorist on the road. Highway safety is everyone’s responsibility.