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9. Auto Accidents: Causes & Prevention

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Uncontrolled Intersections

At intersections without signal lights, STOP, or YIELD signs, slow down and be ready to stop. Yield to vehicles already in the intersection or just entering it. Also yield to vehicles which arrive before you or to the vehicle on your right if it reaches the intersection at the same time as your vehicle.

At a “T” intersection, vehicles on the through road have the right-ofway. If you can not see clearly 100 ft in both directions when approaching an uncontrolled intersection (a blind intersection), you should not be driving faster than 15 MPH so that you will have time to stop if a vehicle pulls out suddenly.

If your view of an uncontrolled intersection is obstructed by parked cars, trees, bushes, buildings, or other objects, you should stop before entering the intersection and slowly inch forward until you can see if there is cross-traffic before proceeding through the intersection.

Narrow, undivided 2-lane rural highways with 55 MPH speed limits can also be particularly hazardous. Because vehicles are traveling in opposite directions at high speeds without a barrier or median, dangerous head-on collisions are more likely to occur.

Some of these highways have mandatory daylight headlight requirements to make your vehicle more visible to other traffic. You must turn your headlights on when driving through one of these zones, regardless of the time of day.

You should also use your headlights on small country or mountain roads, even on sunny days. This will help other drivers see you and help to avoid a head-on collision. Don’t forget to turn them off when you park.

Hills and curves create situations that are hazardous by:

  • blocking your view ahead and the view of other drivers
  • causing vehicles to move slower or faster than is safe

Because you cannot tell what is on the other side of a steep hill or sharp curve, you must be going slowly enough to be able to stop. When approaching a curve in the road or hill which blocks your view of the road ahead, slow down so you can stop, if necessary. A vehicle may be stopped or a pedestrian may be crossing the roadway that you can’t see until you are around the curve or over the hill.

You must be able to see at least one-third of a mile ahead to pass safely. Any time your view is blocked by a hill or curve, you should assume that there is an oncoming car just out of sight. This means you should only pass if a hill or curve ahead is more than one-third of a mile away. You must not drive on the left side of a roadway when coming to a curve or the top of a hill where you can’t see far enough ahead to be sure it is safe to pass.

On curves there is a strong outward pull on your vehicle.

You should cautiously approach curves, particularly when the road may be slippery due to rain, mud, snow, wet leaves, or gravel. You should obey warning speed limits on curves and freeway ramps. If one is not posted, you should judge how sharp the curve is and adjust your speed before you enter the curve. Braking on a curve may cause you to skid.


Lesson Summary


  

Lesson 9 Quiz


You will now answer 5 questions to test what you learned during this lesson. You must answer all questions correctly to receive completion credit for this lesson. You may answer the questions as many times as necessary to get them right.

You should review the lesson material if you don't do well on the quiz.

  1. To avoid tailgating, and help avoid a rear-end collision, you should give yourself a gap of how many seconds behind the car in front of you?


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  2. Failure to yield is the primary cause of what percentage of fatal and injury collisions?


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  3. If you have a tire blowout:


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  4. Teenage drivers have a total accident rate that is _____ times that of adults:


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  5. If you are distracted for one second, by a cell phone, passenger, or other distraction, at 30 mph you will travel how far "blindly"?


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