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Follow these tips for safer driving

Protecting oneself from the dangers on the road is vital. Nobody wants to become a statistic. Below are some tips for safer driving on Illinois roads

-- Practice defensive driving and expect the unexpected. Be alert for bicyclists, pedestrians and aggressive drivers.

-- Illinois residents experience some very harsh winter weather conditions. When the roads are hazardous due to inclement weather, don't drive unless absolutely necessary.

-- No matter what the weather conditions are, remain alert to potential hazards on the road surfaces.

-- Eliminate as many distractions as possible. Put the cellphone up, don't eat, drink or apply make-up behind the wheel.

-- Reduce speed when weather conditions change. The roads are often slickest when the rain first starts.

-- Leave at least a full car length between you and the vehicle up ahead to be able to steer clear of a second impact if you are hit from behind.

-- Keep your eyes roving over the road, check your speed and anticipate movements from other cars.

-- Your blind spots are particularly dangerous. Before making any lane changes, make sure you have clearance.

-- Many car wrecks occur during merging when drivers slow down or come to a complete stop. Keep your car's speed the same as the speed of traffic when merging.

-- Plan for delays when traveling.

Even the safest driver is at the mercy of others on the road with them. If you are injured when somebody plows into your vehicle in an at-fault collision, you don't have to accept the first low-ball offer from his or her insurance company. Have your case reviewed by a legal professional to make sure that you are getting its full value.

Source: Carinsurance.com, "10 Tips for safer driving," accessed Sep. 11, 2015

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