A Guide to Driving Your Kia Safely

safe-driving-tipsWhen you are driving on the freeways and open roads with the music up and the windows up, it is often easy to forget that you are travelling in quite the speed in a chunk of steel and metal. Although cars come equipped with plenty of advanced safety technologies, amenities, and features, nothing can make the difference between life and death – then to be extra alert and watchful while driving.

A simple distraction can result in you losing control of the vehicle and resulting in a crash. All around the world people die because of crashes and auto accidents. Therefore, it is only wise to practice safe driving and follow your state’s guidelines. Look below at these basic rules for safe driving:

Never Drive When Drunk

According to a study conducted by NHTSA, it was revealed that almost 30% of major automotive accidents in the US are caused by drivers being drunk on alcohol. Most of these deaths could easily have been prevented, if drivers more wary about their actions and simply hadn’t sit in the driver seat while drunk. Alcohol is linked to several impairments that can lead to serious car accidents.

It lowers inhibitions and reduces coordination and reaction time. It also blurs your vision and results in confusion. To avoid driving drunk and saving your own life, consider asking a sober friend for a ride or consider calling a cab. If you are planning to drink at a party or get-together, always make sure you have a designated driver who can get you home safely.

Avoid Speeding at All Costs

The old adage “Speed Kills” still goes true in today’s time, yet majority of people hardly pay any attention to the speed they are travelling at. Yes, it is easy to give into road rage and drive like a maniac. However, if you do not want to end up in a car crash, it is imperative that you be more responsible. Drive safely and at a stable speed.

According to NHTSA, 31% of all fatal crashes were caused by over-speeding in 2008. Almost 11,674 lives were lost because of this very factor. Over-speeding can increase the chances of a crash by almost 50%. Therefore, it is only wise that you take your time and obey posted speed limits. Even on long journeys, try your best to maintain a stable and reasonable speed.

Avoid All Types of Distractions

One of the main causes of accidents in the US resulting in more than 2,600 nationwide deaths per year is using cell phones while driving. In fact, these numbers may still be low, as the usage of cell phones behind the wheel has only increases. People get involved in texting and talking while driving, which most think not a big deal, until they end up in an accident.

However, it isn’t just cell phones, which are responsible for creating distractions. Interacting with passengers, fiddling with electronic devices, applying makeup, and eating while driving are all linked to diverting a drivers’ attention. All of these can result in potentially deadly accidents. The only tip to avoid distractions is to keep your hands on the wheel and eyes on the road!

Don’t Drive Drowsy

According to a study conducted by Virginia Tech, it was revealed that almost 20% of all accidents are caused by drowsiness, which is caused by sleepiness. The results are rather predictable, if a driver is too tired to fall asleep while driving. Even on a straight road, a sleeping driver will eventually bang into another car, roadside, ravines, utility poles, and trees, which can turn this simple mistake into a deadly scenario.

The solution is to get better and more sleep at night. Avoid driving when you feel drowsy because of sleepiness, as it will only make you lazy, distort your vision, or cause confusion. If you feel extremely sleepy, pull up to the side of the road and take some time out to get back to normal.

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Always Wear Your Seat Belt

This may sound a bit cliché, but nevertheless SEAT BELTS SAVE LIVES! When worn properly, you can prevent yourself from being injured, regardless of the intensity of the accident. The seat beat keeps your body intact in the event of a collision, preventing you and passengers from being thrown out the windshield. NHTSA revealed that majority of accident fatalities and deaths are a result of passengers and drivers not wearing seat belts. Bear in mind that you always have a chance of surviving, if you are wearing a seat belt at all times when driving.

Be Extremely Careful in Bad Weather

When it comes to driving on icy roads, heavy rain, in a snowstorm, or through fog, it is imperative that you be extra cautious and careful. In extreme weather conditions, it is advised that you always wear your seat belt, maintain extra space between cars ahead, be careful around curves, and drive below the speed limit, if necessary. Consider delegating some duties to other passengers. However, if the weather continues to worsen, do not take the risk of continuing to drive. Instead, find a safe place until the weather clears out.

Don’t Follow Other Cars Too Closely

Whenever driving on the freeway or on open roads, make sure that you are maintaining a safe distance from other vehicles on the road. Don’t drive bumper-to-bumper, as if the driver in front of you makes a sudden stop or turn, it can be extremely difficult for you to slow down or break in time. According to a research conducted by automotive experts, it was revealed that is best to follow the “three-second rule” of driving behind another car.

Keep Your Vehicle Safe

This goes without saying in order to keep you and your family safe while driving, always make sure that your vehicle is maintained properly. Even the simplest of problems like underinflated tires can result in a serious crash. Therefore, make it a habit to inspect your vehicle for any problems before driving. Additionally, try your best to get your car analyzed by a professional mechanic every month. This way, you can get any issue repaired before they lead to an accident.

Therefore, now that you are familiar with the tips mentioned above, driving safe

10 Fall Driving Hazards for Kia Owners to Avoid

driving hazardsFall is a great season—it’s no longer too hot to enjoy time outside during the day and it means the beginning of the holiday season. Because fall isn’t winter, most people do not consider this to be a dangerous time of the year to drive, but the truth is that fall can actually be just as hazardous as winter, especially here in New England. If you want to drive safely during this season, here are ten fall driving hazards you should be aware of:

1. People going back to school. In the summer, roads are usually clearer than they are once kids start back to school. Not only are parents trying to get their children to the bus on time, they are also dropping their kids off at school and then trying to get to their own places of work without being late. Back to school traffic means there will be more pedestrians in both suburban and city areas, and there will be more people on the road. Being aware of this increased traffic can help you plan your route to avoid it.

2. Leaves falling on the road. What’s dangerous about leaves on the road? Anyone who has ever stepped on a patch of wet leaves knows that wet leaves are slippery. Fall means a large accumulation of leaves on the road increased rains means that the leaves are more likely to be slippery. This can mean that your car can slide through these piles of leaves when you are trying to brake. Wet leaves on the road can be almost as dangerous as ice on the road, so be careful and look for accumulations of leaves while driving.

3. Early morning fog. Fall usually brings with it cooler temperatures, and that means fog in the morning. While fog will generally start to burn off once the sun comes up, if you have an early start in the morning or the sun never came out from behind the clouds to burn the fog away, you might be facing a foggy drive to work. Luckily, every Kia vehicle as the appropriate lights to help you see through and be seen in the fog.

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4. Frost. As temperatures start to drop, frost will start to collect on the windshields of cars. Your Kia will have an excellent defroster to get your windows clear, but making sure you can actually get your windows clear before you need to leave for work will take some planning. Stepping outside to turn on your car five to ten minutes before you actually need to leave is a great way to make sure that you windows will be clear of frost by the time you are on the road, without any need to scrape the windows.

5. Ice on the road. Ice is usually believed to be just a winter hazard, but the truth is that if it is cold enough to ice up your windows, it is cold enough to ice up the roads. Any area of the road that is often shady, along with bridges, is more likely to accumulate ice during a cold night and is less likely to have that ice burn off by the time you need to be on the road. By aware of shady and cold spots on the road so you do not run the risk of sliding or spinning out.

6. The sun. In the fall, the sun starts to set earlier and earlier in the evening. Once Daylight Savings Time ends (on November 1st in 2015), the sun will set even earlier, usually just as most people are heading home from work. That means that you are likely to encounter serious sun glare either driving to or home from work or errands. Sun glare can make it difficult to see stoplights, road hazards, and even other drivers, especially if their lights are not on. Keeping your windshields clean can make the road much easier to see and wearing sunglasses can prevent the sun from momentarily blinding you.

7. Deer. In most parts of the country, deer are migrating during the fall. This means that more deer are going to be trying to cross roads and there is a highly likelihood of hitting one. Hitting a dear isn’t just dangerous for that deer, it is dangerous for you and your vehicle. Being alert, especially when driving through parts of your town or city where deer are likely to be, is very important.

8. Fewer daylight hours. During the summer, you might be able to wake up, get read, go to work, go home, have dinner, and run errands all during the daylight. The shorter daylight hours in fall means that you are more likely to be driving on dark roads, even just to and from work or school. Being aware of the darkness, driving with your lights on, and watching for pedestrians, animals, and other vehicles is especially important during the fall.

9. Foggy windshields. During fall days, your windshields are more likely to fog up, as temperatures change throughout the day. Making sure that you have your defroster on and that you even have a rag to wipe your windshields clear will prevent the reduced visibility that comes along with these lower temperatures.

10. Igniting leaf piles. A dry pile of leaves under your car can actually be ignited after you park your car. Avoid driving through or parking on top of dry leaf piles. Clear them out of your gutters and yards as frequently as possible in order to avoid this fall driving hazard.