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What can you do to avoid accidents in stop-and-go traffic?

Stop-and-go traffic is brutal. You feel like you're getting nowhere. You still have to pay close attention to the road around you, but it can stretch on for hours.

With all of that road congestion, it's a likely place for an accident. What can you do to stay safe and avoid a crash?

  • Check your brake lights. These often go out without drivers noticing since they can't see them when they're in the car. Check yours periodically to make sure others can see you.
  • Stay up-to-date with brake maintenance. Get the pads replaced when needed. Be proactive; don't wait for a problem before taking care of them.
  • Stay aware. This can be hard. Again, driving in stop-and-go traffic can feel endless and it's draining. You have to keep paying attention at all times, no matter how bored you feel.
  • Consider proper stopping distances. Don't get too close to the cars ahead of you. You're not going to make them go any faster. Keep an eye on other drivers who may get too close to the back of your car.
  • Don't get distracted. Don't get your cell phone out to browse the Internet or send a text. It's tempting. You had things you wanted to do, and now you're sitting in traffic. Don't give in.
  • Speed up and slow down smoothly. Don't slam on the brakes or the gas. Sudden movements can be very problematic with no room for error.

If you are involved in an accident in California, you may wind up facing high medical bills, losing out on wages you should have earned and facing many other costs. Be sure you know if you have a right to financial compensation.

Source: Your Mechanic, "How to Safely Drive in Stop-and-Go Traffic," Brady Klopfer, accessed Oct. 18, 2017

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