There are certain traffic laws we all have to abide by, such as responding to light changes at a traffic stop, or only changing lanes on a painted dotted line roadway. And then, there are others that a very high percentage of us disregard. This may be due to the fact that they simply aren't well known or that they are easily ignored. If you have been injured in a car accident because someone neglected to follow a traffic law contact a dedicated car accident attorney in South Florida today for a free legal consultation.
Whatever the reason, these are the top traffic laws that people in the U.S. don’t always pay much attention to.
Driving Without Seat Belt Fastened
Crash tests have proved it a thousand times – wearing your seat belt can save your life. With this in mind, it is shocking to hear that driving without a seat belt securely fastened and buckled in is one of the top laws that is ignored.
Although there is the popular highway slogan “click it or ticket,” this is rarely the case. If drivers are ticketed for driving without a seat belt on, it's normally tacked on to other offenses, and only noticed by the police officer afterwards.
Texting While Driving
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cell phone use while driving leads to 1.6 million crashes each year causing severe injuries and in some cases death. That means that 1 in every 4 car crashes in the U.S. are caused by texting while driving. While these numbers are alarmingly high, texting while driving is still one of the top traffic laws that many people seem to ignore.
In 2015, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration noted that the U.S. issued an average of 112,000 speeding tickets every day, and fines paid that year totaled over $6.2 billion. However, speed limit signs are one of those laws that about 99% of us still don't abide by, even though we understand we could easily be pulled over for going over. If a speed limit sign reads 60 MPH, majority of drivers are going at least a few miles above this. In fact, if a driver is driving at the speed limit or under it, he or she will normally be passed.
Indicating a Turn
Indicating that you're changing lanes or turning your car in a new direction is a simple maneuver, but according to the Society of Automotive Engineers (via NASDAQ), nearly half of us choose not to use our indicators at all while we are driving.
It's unclear why this is, other than the unassuming reasoning that some drivers simply ignore this traffic law out of habit. However, it can be assumed that once this behavior has caused an accident on the road, drivers alter their old habit and begin using the indicating signal again. To be on the safe side, look into your mirror before changing lanes or turning, as well as putting your indicator on for at least five seconds before maneuvering.
Decreasing Speed in School Zones
It probably goes without saying that abiding traffic signs in school zones is extremely important. Whether this means watching out for crossing guards, school busses or children playing, it's important to be alert and off your cell phone when driving through school zones.
No matter how much of a hurry you're in, it's important to always pay attention to the traffic laws around you. Set distractions out of sight, including mobile devices and other electronics. Make sure every person in the car has their seat belt fastened before departing on your trip, and always use your indicator when merging, changing lanes, and turning. The roads are dangerous enough with traffic laws in place, and they only become more dangerous if you decide not to pay attention to them.