As a driver, what percentage of the time would you say you use turn signals before making a turn or changing lanes on the road?
Some drivers view turn signals as a courtesy, but their use is actually required by law.
Turn signals provide an effective means of communication to let other drivers know where you are going so that they can act accordingly. It tells your intension such as changing lanes, turning to a corner, or pulling over to the roadside.
As easy as using the turn signal may seem, most people do not know how to effectively use it. When used the wrong way, you’ll end up sending wrong signals to other road users. And this may likely cause an accident.
Below are the ways to effectively use your turn signal while driving.
1. Use it even when you don’t see another car around
If you’re a good driver, using the turn signals should come natural. You don’t have to see it as a strenuous work to do. It is very important you develop the habit of using it whenever you drive, even if you don’t see any other drivers around you at that time. The turn signal is not just for other car drivers; it’s also helpful to pedestrian, cyclists and others who share the road with you.
2. Signal on time
Always ensure you use the signal on time. Avoid the habit of using it when it’s too late. Doing so may not give the other road users enough time to react to what you intend to do. The right time to put on your turn signal is when you’re 100 feet (30.48 meters) to your point of intersection. This is generally by estimation.
3. Use your turn signal before you brake
This may sound weird to some people, but the right thing to do is to activate your turn signal before stepping on the brake. This will enable drivers and other road users behind you know why you’re braking. This will allow sensible drivers behind you to give you enough space to turn.
4. Don’t fiddle with your turn signal
Your turn signal is not something to play with when you get bored of driving. It should only be used when necessary. In case your the turn signal does not go off after making turn, you can momentarily put it off until you fix the problem. Turn signals are made in a way they can go off after you’ve made the turn.
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