Observed annually in June, National Safety Month focuses attention on reducing the leading causes of injury and death at work, on the road and in our homes and communities. To recognize National Safety Month, Oklahoma Farm Bureau presents a weekly series that focuses on ways we can make every aspect of our work and home lives safer for all. Join us, along with the National Safety Council and thousands of organizations across the country, as we work to raise awareness of what it takes to stay safe.
It can happen to you.
About 100 people die every day in car crashes, the No. 1 cause of unintentional deaths in the U.S. according to the National Safety Council. What’s more, up to 90 percent of all car crashes are caused by driver error.
When you get behind the wheel, your safety is in your hands. Commit to safer driving and do your part this National Safety Month to reduce safety risks on the road.
Hang up the phone
An estimated 1 in 4 car crashes involves cell phone use – including hands-free.1 Many drivers believe they are being safe by using hands-free devices, but your brain is still distracted by the conversation. Drivers talking on cell phones can miss seeing up to 50% of their driving environments – like red lights and pedestrians – while distracted.1 Remember: One call could change it all.
For times when distractions are unavoidable, consider new safety features such as lane departure warning and side blind zone alert from Chevrolet. These new technologies will alert you if your vehicle strays into another lane, and help you avoid lane changes where there are vehicles in the “side blind zone,” respectively. Oklahoma Farm Bureau member benefit partner Chevrolet is committed to providing vehicle safety technologies to help keep you and your family safe — from the start of your journey to your destination.
Speeding was a factor in almost a third of fatal crashes in 2012, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. And while many people believe speeding is only a problem on highways, crash deaths involving speeding happen much more often on minor roads like neighborhood streets.
According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, speed reduces a driver’s ability to negotiate curves or maneuver around obstacles, decreases the effectiveness of vehicle features such as air bags, and increases the risk of crashes. Even 5mph can make the difference between life and death.
Vehicle safety features like Chevrolet Forward Collision Alert can help remind you to slow down. With Forward Collision Alert, you will be alerted if the system detects a potential collision based on closing speeds, giving you enough time to maneuver safely.
Take the defense
By driving defensively, you can prevent potential accidents. Watch your blind spots in order to avoid getting struck by another vehicle. Check intersections before pulling out, as not everyone stops when the light turns red. And try to stay at least three to four seconds behind the person in front of you – more in bad weather – to give yourself room to avoid an accident.
You can also utilize vehicle safety features such as Antilock Brake System, traction control, and daytime running lamps to help you if driving in bad weather. ABS helps you maintain steering control by reducing wheel lockup during hard braking on slippery surfaces. Traction control also helps reduce wheel spin during acceleration on slippery surfaces. Daytime running lamps make your vehicle easier to see in a variety of daytime conditions, including fog, rain, dusk and bright sunlight.
NSC recommends these additional tips to stay safe on the road:
- Buckle up every trip, every time – even when traveling short distances.
- Refrain from using electronic devices – including hands-free – behind the wheel.
- Secure children in size-appropriate restraints.
- Do not drink and drive, as impairment begins with the first drink.I If you drink, designate a sober driver or take alternate transportation.
- Never drive when you are tired – get plenty of sleep before your trip and plan regular stops.
If you are in market for a new vehicle with some of the newest safety features available, remember that eligible Oklahoma Farm Bureau members receive a $500 incentive toward the purchase or lease of most new Chevrolet® cars, trucks, crossovers, vans and SUVs. The incentive can be stacked with most other available offers, including GM Business Choice, Owner Loyalty and current in-market incentives (excludes military, employee, dealership employee and supplier pricing discounts).
Must be an Oklahoma Farm Bureau member for at least 30 days prior to date of delivery of the vehicle to be eligible. Offer is subject to change without notice.