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Be the best driver you can be

October 27, 2012
By DAVE WERNER , Adirondack Daily Enterprise

Did you ever play any sports, either in school or after graduation? The answer to this question is likely yes for 99 out of 100 persons. More than 50 percent of students now participate in at least one school sport, and most people continue or start some sports after graduation.

Second question! When you played a sport, or when you currently play, did you or do you try to do your best? Again, most would answer "yes" to this question.

How is this associated with traffic safety you might ask? Well, question three is this: if you try to do your best when playing a sport, why don't you try to drive your best when you are operating a motor vehicle? Why don't we, as drivers, try to be the best possible driver we are capable of being?

When we play sports we concentrate on the task required of us - we aren't thinking about other things, or just going through the motions. We are trying to be good, trying to make a good throw, a good catch, run fast, the best golf drive or putt we can. You get the picture. So why don't we do the same as we drive?

Why don't we concentrate enough to keep our vehicle in the middle of the driving lane? Why don't we park between the lines rather than taking up two spaces? If we have trouble backing up, why don't we try to learn how to do it better?

When we play sports we generally try to be better than the other players. We try to play good enough to be better than the other team, or the other golfers, or the other tennis player. We don't play to try to lose; we play to win!

We need to apply the concept of an athlete to our driving. We need to try to be the best we can. This means obeying the laws, continually trying to perform the skills of driving better, in fact, trying to be a better driver than the other drivers. And, yes, there are skills to being a good driver. The vehicle only goes where you make it go, only stops when you make it stop, only goes at the speed you make it go.

When we first learn to drive, we don't know how to handle the finer points of driving - that's why we begin with a learners permit, and then practice, practice, practice. When we take our road test, we are judged not on how skillfully we can drive, but on the basics of being able to control One-and-a-half tons to 2 tons of metal enough to at least get by without a crash under the best of conditions.

Driving is like sports - we don't become good at it without years of practice and great effort trying to be as good as possible. We do it with sports, why not with driving?

For more articles on traffic law and safety, go to the traffic safety board's website at" and click on "Traffic Safety Board" under departments then look for Did You Know articles under "services."



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