Friday, January 9, 2015

Avoiding Head-On Collisions

A head-on collision is one of the worst collisions on the road, as they often result in a fatality. Fortunately, these collisions are relatively rare. Head-on collisions can occur on any type of roadway from curvy roads to straight stretches and from two-lane highways to one-way streets. It is vital to be aware of the roadway and other vehicles to avoid head-on collisions. It is also important to be prepared to react to such situations to avoid a collision and to minimize the potential for injury or death.

Head-on collisions can occur when a vehicle crosses the median, or centerline. This can be a result from a driver who is asleep, distracted, or under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Crossing the centerline or median can also occur when a vehicle takes a curve at too great a rate of speed.

Head-on collisions can happen when a driver, knowingly or unknowingly, travels the wrong way in a traffic lane. A common example of this is when a driver enters the roadway and does not see that the road is divided with a median strip. As a result, the driver goes left of the median instead of right and into oncoming traffic.

To help avoid a head-on collision, look down the road for erratic behavior of oncoming traffic. Communicate with other drivers using your horn and headlights. Running headlights, even in daylight, can be especially helpful on curvy roads when other vehicles are more likely to veer from their lane of travel. 

Be careful not to hug the centerline, but drive on the right side of your lane. If an approaching vehicle enters your lane, first slow down as quickly as possible without losing control. Braking will reduce the force of impact if a collision should occur. Drive to the right to avoid the collision, if possible. Going to the left could cause a more serious collision in the event the other driver attempts to recover back to his or her lane at the last second. Going to the left could also cause a head-on collision with other oncoming vehicles. 

When going right, don’t jerk the wheel as this could cause you to lose control of the vehicle and could cause a rollover. If you have to exit the roadway, slow down but do not lock the brakes. This will help maintain control of the vehicle and to avoid hitting solid objects like a tree or bridge support. 


All drivers should continue to practice safe driving habits, such as avoiding distractions, passing with care, and maintaining safe speeds, which will help to avoid head-on collisions. Should a head-on collision occur, wearing your seatbelt can help save your life.

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