Las Vegas is a special place. People from all over the globe descent on “the Entertainment Capital of the World” for fun, gambling, and a whole lot more. Las Vegas covers 113.3 square miles, has a population of over 650,000, and hosts more than 49 million visitors a year. Las Vegas is truly the city that never sleeps.
The Greater Las Vegas Metropolitan Area makes up about 77 percent of Nevada’s total population and around 60 percent of vehicle-related fatalities. The highways in and around Las Vegas are typically four to six lanes and have an average speed limit of 45 mph.
Defensive Driving — the Basics
According to a report published by the online law information site HG.org, Las Vegas ranks 144 out of 200 of the nation’s largest cities for driver safety. Las Vegas drivers are 21% more likely to have an accident than the national average. The question becomes: How do people prevent Las Vegas traffic accidents?
It sounds a little trite, but the answer is as simple as your rear view mirror — Defensive Driving. Whether you are a Las Vegas resident or a visitor, it is easy to review safe driving suggestions from the Nevada DMV Handbook (2022). Knowing the road rules will help you avoid needing a Las Vegas law firm to fight a traffic citation.
There are only about five basic concepts to defensive driving. They include:
- Obey traffic laws. Traffic laws are primarily intuitive — Stop at stop signs, don’t speed, etc.
- Maintain a safe distance between you and the vehicle ahead of you. A simple rule of thumb is to keep three seconds of space between you and the car in front of you. That’s about a car length (roughly 15 feet) for every ten mph you’re traveling. For example, if you are driving at 45 mph, you need about three car lengths between you and the car in front of you. At 75 mph, maintain at least seven car lengths between you and the vehicle in front of you.
- Avoid distractions. Have you ever stopped at an intersection and noticed many if not all of the other stopped drivers have their heads down? They probably aren’t praying. After all, it’s a good bet they’re on their smartphones. It’s easy to let yourself be distracted when driving. But you are in control. You control the vehicle you are driving, and you control how you handle distractions. It’s good to know that it is against the law to talk on cell phones or text while driving in Nevada unless you use a Bluetooth device.
- Shun aggressive drivers. Give tailgaters and speeders the right-of-way. Ego is not a good traveling partner.
- Drive for the conditions. If you are going 45 mph on a wet or icy surface, the three seconds of space rule of thumb needs another knuckle — add a second of space for the weather.
It is helpful for motorists to stay informed on Las Vegas traffic updates. The essence of defensive driving, after all, is anticipating what could happen ahead.
When driving, have you had a car approach you from the opposite direction and cross the center line? Most times, they correct and get back over, right? Perhaps they were on their phone, or talking to someone in the back seat, or enjoying a McDonald’s burger. It doesn’t matter.
The point is you cannot assume the other driver will correct their driving to avoid plowing head-on into you.
You have no control of other drivers, and you can’t read their minds. Your only defense when driving is your preparedness.
Usually, we don’t want to think ill of others. But when driving, you need to anticipate other drivers’ actions.
The best rule for defensive driving is to assume everyone else on the road is an idiot or drunk. It sounds harsh, but it can be a lifesaver.
So, when that oncoming vehicle crosses the centerline, please don’t assume they will correct themselves as soon as they get that text message sent.
Assume the worst and take appropriate action, such as slowing down and simultaneously taking stock of your surroundings. Are there escape routes available, like a good shoulder, if you need to take evasive actions?
Hands Down, Preventing a Wreck Beats Surviving One
As in any big city, drivers in Las Vegas are going someplace. Many are residents going about their daily business, and others may be tourists heading to or coming from Resort Corridor, including Las Vegas Boulevard — the Strip.
Unfortunately, accidents happen, even to defensive drivers. If you are unfortunate enough to be in a car wreck, chances are you will benefit from contacting a Las Vegas law firm. Almost all Nevada personal injury attorneys defend clients involved in Las Vegas traffic accidents.
If you are injured, you want a Las Vegas law firm that will back you all the way, whether you are a Las Vegas resident or a guest in this great city. The Schnitzer Law Firm will see that you receive all compensation you should receive. If you are injured, that compensation may include. If you are injured, that compensation may include:
- All potential future medical treatments costs
- All medical bills, follow-up medical costs, medications, and therapy costs
- Lost wages and job retraining, if necessary
- All property loss from the wreck
- Compensation for your pain and suffering
Don’t gamble with your health. People in car accidents in Las Vegas deserve five-star treatment from a five-star law firm.
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