Hey! Let's be careful out there!

Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty

As I headed out on the road this morning, those words from Sgt. Esterhouse on Hill Street Blues floated through my mind. It wasn't long before I realized how important they were, especially here in Michigan. On a 20 mile stretch of highway, I saw at least 6 accidents and another 6-8 cars in the ditch or median. It wasn't until later in the day that I heard the news that an emergency responder was killed while helping someone else at an accident site located right where I exited the highway.

That tragedy should make us all stop and think about our driving habits and our personal safety. There was plenty of black ice and slippery conditions all along that route this morning. Despite that, and despite the fact that there were so many cars off the road and damaged along the way, other drivers insisted on driving above the speed limit or faster than the conditions justified. Was it bravado? Insanity? Or perhaps a feeling of invincibility? I don't know. I do know that there are some basic safe driving rules we should all follow when the weather is marginal or dangerous.

Slow down! - This is the golden rule of driving in bad weather. Slower speeds gives you more reaction time and reduces the damage you and your vehicle will sustain in a crash.

Give yourself plenty of room in front and in back! - On any given day, I will see people following another car with less than a car length of space between their front bumper and there other vehicle's rear bumper. In normal driving conditions, you should keep a 2-second space between vehicles. In foul weather, you need to have a 4-second space. Are you too close? Pick a marker by the side of the road. When the rear bumper of the car ahead of you passes that point, start counting by thousands -- 1000 -- 2000. If you pass the point before you count to 2000, you are too close!

Drive defensively! Drive like everyone else is out to get you! If you expect the other drivers to be careless, you are more likely to anticipate their actions and be able to respond quickly to any situation that develops. And just remember, just because you are paranoid - it doesn't mean they aren't out to get you! (And if they are out to get you, it isn't paranoia at all!)

So, I hope these tips are helpful. Drive safe - especially through the rest of this winter and Hey...Hey!...Let's be careful out there!

Comments (2)

Lu Kalaj
Vision Realty Centers - Brighton Township, MI
Safety on the road is always a concern.  I always am weary when I see those in dispair on the road.  Especially in the cold weather of Michigan.  May your travels be safe int 2008.  Lu
Jan 26, 2008 11:52 AM
Bonnie Barbieri
Remax Marketing Specialists - Spring Hill, FL

Michael:  I heard today that besides making it safer on the roads driving slower also saves on gasoline.

I lived in Michigan for 3 yrs (Scio Township-AA address) and I hated driving to work in the snow.  I always worried about the ice, drivers who went much to fast and deer!  I never hit a deer but was always so afraid I would.  I would always have at least 2 or 3 drivers speed around us and go flying down the road.  They really didn't get far. 

We had a horrible accident in the Tampa Bay area a couple of weeks ago involving fog and smoke from some fires.  People weren't paying attention and kept driving into the fog and didn't try to slow down or get out of the way.  It was horrible and several people died. 

Keep safe on those Michigan roads.  I know where Chelsea is.  They have that little theater there.

Bonnie Barbieri - Remax Advantage - Spring Hill FL


Jan 26, 2008 12:27 PM