Responsible drivers in North Carolina know that following traffic laws and keeping aware of their surroundings while operating a motor vehicle help them avoid accidents. However, even the safest drivers can become involved in car accidents due to factors outside their control. Defensive driving classes provide many benefits by teaching individuals the techniques to minimize their risk of being in a motor vehicle accident and keeping themselves and other drivers safe.
Improved driving record and lower insurance premiums
When you attend a defensive driving course, some states will reduce the points on your driving record after a ticket and assure you that your car insurance rates will not increase. Some insurance companies may also give you up to a 10% reduction in premiums for taking a defensive driving course, and the discount may last for three to five years. Sometimes, a judge may order mandatory defensive driving school attendance instead of points or a suspended driver’s license.
The state regulates a defensive driving school course, and contents may vary between states, although most have similar curriculums. The classes train drivers based on the traffic laws in their particular state and cover topics such as the dynamics of a car crash, human factors such as drunk drivers, psychological factors that affect driving, and data and statistics on actual crashes and fatalities.
Crash prevention techniques
In a defensive driving course, students learn how to avoid motor vehicle accidents and spot potential hazards in time to prevent crashes. Defensive driving students may have a classroom or behind-the-wheel training experience, depending on the school. Topics covered include:
- How to use the two-second rule for proper following distance
- Scanning the road and adapting driving style to surroundings
- Keeping aware of reaction time and distance
- Sharing the road and giving right of way
- Vehicle emergencies
- Hazards of the environment
- Knowing the vehicle’s required stopping distance
Knowledge is power, and defensive driving students often significantly increase confidence after class completion. Students improve their behind-the-wheel skills, learn to anticipate risks and have the information to make informed decisions to complete safer driving maneuvers.
Defensive driving classes are for new drivers who might feel timid or hesitant on the road, seniors who want a refresher on their driving skills and any other individual who wants or needs additional driving education.