Going accident-free is the best way to keep your Calgary auto insurance rates low, but while a lot has been said about how to be a good driver, there isn’t as much discussion about being a good passenger. It’s equally important to promote safety regardless of whether you’re behind the wheel or just along for the ride. With that in mind, let’s look at some handy safety tips for vehicle passengers.
Calgary Auto Insurance: How to Be a Great Passenger
Whether you’re driving across town or across the province, passengers should always follow these important pieces of safety advice:
- Act as the designated phone person. Sometimes it’s necessary to confer with the people you’re meeting to confirm plans and clarify directions. If it’s necessary for to send a text message or make a phone call while the vehicle is in motion, have a passenger do it. Under no circumstances should the driver ever use a cell phone in traffic. If it’s something that can’t wait and only the driver can take care of it, they must pull off the road and stop the vehicle before using any electronic device.
- Assist with directions and GPS consultations. If you’re following an unfamiliar route, the passenger should also play the role of co-pilot. Let the passenger operate the GPS unit; if you don’t have one, leave it to the passenger to refer to maps or manage written directions. Have the passenger keep an eye open for any key landmarks or turns along the route.
- Keep distractions to a minimum. As a passenger, you should strive to keep distractions to a minimum and allow the driver to focus on the road. Don’t engage the driver in unnecessary or involved conversation, and keep your non-essential phone calls to an absolute minimum. You may not realize it, but your conversation could be a major distraction to the driver. As a driver, remember that Alberta has strict distracted driving laws, and repeated offences can lead to increases in your car insurance premiums.
- Operate the radio and CD/mp3 player. When the front-seat passenger takes care of manning the radio tuner and operating the CD/mp3 player, the driver doesn’t have to take his or her eyes off the road or hands off the wheel, and that’s always safer. However, make sure to keep volume levels reasonable, as loud music can lead to trouble for the driver. And of course, always ask the driver for their preference of tunes!
- Keep your eyes peeled. Being what they call a “back-seat driver” can be as distracting as it is annoying, but you should stay alert for obstacles and hazards that may be outside the driver’s field of vision. Help the driver make lane changes and turns on busy roads and highways, and act as an extra set of eyes if the driver has to put the vehicle in reverse.
- Give kids quiet activities to enjoy during the trip. Parents of young children know that dealing with dissatisfied youngsters can be a major distraction. Plan ahead if you’re going to be travelling with kids by making sure they have games and activities to enjoy during the trip. Adult passengers can participate, leaving the driver free to concentrate on the task at hand.
Calgary Auto Insurance: Discover the Lane’s Advantage
At Lane’s Insurance, we want to keep your Calgary auto insurance rates low. That’s why we always encourage our clients to avoid bad habits on the road and make safety a top priority. We offer comprehensive resources on road safety and the proper usage of electronic devices as part of our commitment to help make Alberta’s roads safer.
You can also count on us for unbiased, friendly advice for all your vehicle insurance needs, including everything from specialized RV insurance to coverage for regular cars and trucks. Lane’s Insurance is a brokerage, and our professionals work for you, not for the insurance company. We strive to provide our customers with a broad range of competitively priced insurance products, and offer value-added service if you ever need to file a claim.