New Driver Tips in Connecticut 

Congratulations! If you are reading this, you’ve most likely earned, or are about to earn, your driver’s license. Driving a car will give you a great deal of freedom, and a lot of power, too. But you know what they say: with great power comes great responsibility.
As you embark on your new life behind the wheel, you will want to be very careful to develop early the habits and disciplines of a great driver.

 Below you will find some new driver tips to help you develop safe behaviors to protect yourself on the road. The practices that you lock in now will potentially save your life as well as those who share the road or the car with you. But it’s not just about the distant future: the fewer miles you have logged behind the wheel, the more likely you are to be in an accident in Connecticut or anywhere else that you drive.

Here are a few important things you can do to start off on the right foot.

1. Practice, practice, practice.
A blog or a book can only teach a new driver so much. Driving is a physical, sensory experience, and you will be well served to learn while doing. Practice your driving skills in a safe area with a parent or guardian who is a veteran (and safe) operator. Get a lot of hours behind the wheel with the supervision of someone who can observe and teach you. It’s also advisable to take advantage of driving lessons from a local driving school. Better yet, take a defensive driving course. Many CT insurance companies will offer you a discount for completing such courses.

2. Get supervised practice in challenging conditions.
If at all possible, learn how to drive in rainy and snowy conditions before you are on your own. Rain and snow can add a significant degree of difficulty to everyday driving, and you will need to know how your vehicle handles in these circumstances. Make a point to find time to practice with a parent or certified instructor in a safe and secluded area under these conditions. Empty parking lots can be a good option.

3. Set high personal standards for non-distracted driving.
It is well known that driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or while drowsy, is extremely dangerous. Yet many new and (let’s admit it) experienced drivers have a hard time appreciating that many forms of distracted driving can be equally dangerous. Don’t fall into the trap of “everybody else does it” here.

Resolve from the start of your driving career to avoid these dangerous distracted driving activities (and politely tell the people you love to “stop it,” too). While driving, avoid…
• Sending, receiving, or reading text messages. Unless you are using your phone for hands-free GPS navigation, it’s safest to actually power down your phone if you are tempted to use it while driving.
• Making or receiving calls. This practice is illegal in many states, and even calls made on hands-free devices will compromise your driving attentiveness.
• Drinking, eating or smoking. These activities require you to take your hands off of the wheel and divert your eyes from the roadway.
• Tuning the radio or selecting music. Set your station or your playlist before you start moving.
• Interacting with the passengers in your vehicle. Most states place limits on the number of passengers, especially young passengers, in the car with a teen driver. Interacting with passengers is difficult to manage while learning to drive.
• Grooming. Even if you are late to work or school, don’t fall into the habit of combing your hair, applying makeup, or any other personal grooming while operating your vehicle.

4. Take speed and following distances seriously.

This isn’t NASCAR, and there’s no hero’s glory or million dollar prize at the end of your journey. It’s important to remember that no matter how in control YOU feel, you have no control over others around you. Unforeseen obstacles and incidents come up almost instantly and a smart driver will give themselves time to respond. You give yourself more time to be in control of your destiny when you drive at the posted speed, and when you leave an ample distance between you and the vehicle that you are following. Never tailgate, and extend your following distance in rainy and snowy conditions.

5. Anticipate the possibilities.
Skilled drivers are always reading the road and the other motorists around them: looking for signals, responding to brake lights, scanning the entire intersection, checking mirrors. Be aware of erratic or potentially distracted drivers around you, and be prepared to react. Never trust that people driving other cars will make optimal decisions. Your fate is in your own hands, so continually take in all the changing information around you so that you can be prepared for the possibilities. Ask yourself, “What would I do if…?”

In no time at all, driving will feel like second nature. Make the effort now to establish good habits, so that when you find yourself in a challenging situation, your reaction will come almost automatically, from second nature. Once again, welcome to the road. Navigate it well and it will take you places!

Final Thoughts

Now that you're driving, you will need to find the car insurance coverage that is best suited to protect you on the road.  Plymouth Rock is here to help you understand your options and provide you with the information you need to make a good decision. To help you in your search for the best coverage at the best price, you can read more about what you should consider when comparing insurance companies and what discounts you could even be eligible for as a Connecticut driver. Contact Plymouth Rock Assurance for a quote today, and a friendly, knowledgeable representative would be happy to speak with you and see what we can save you. Plymouth Rock – more than just insurance!

Call 855-993-4470, get your free quote online, or contact your local Plymouth Rock agent to find out how you can save on your car insurance rates in Connecticut today. If you need further information, you can visit our Contact Us page.