Whether you are a native or newcomer, you know California has its fair share of bridges. You probably do not think much about the bridge beneath your car's tires, but you should. After all, accidents on bridges are often more serious than those on conventional roadways.
To arrive at your destination safely, you must always drive cautiously. While you have probably heard about the dangers of both drunk and distracted driving, you may not know bridges pose their own risks. Here are four tips for staying safe on bridges:
1. Understand bridges are different than roadways
On most California roadways, the shoulder meets land. If you need, you can typically pull your car completely off the roadway. Moreover, highways in the Golden State usually feature wide lanes and gradual curves. The same is not necessarily true for bridges, however. Before you try to drive across one, remember that bridges are different than roadways. As such, you probably need to employ different driving skills to avoid an accident on a bridge.
2. Keep some extra space in front of your car
When you drive in inclement weather, you (should) exercise additional caution. That makes sense, as hazardous roadways are breeding grounds for automobile accidents. You should treat bridges the same way you do bad weather conditions. That is, keep some extra space in front of your vehicle. This allows you and other drivers to maneuver away from dangers on the bridge.
3. Move as much out of traffic as you can
As bridges usually cover expanses above water, they are often narrow. If there is an accident on the bridge in front of you, your vehicle may be a sitting duck. To increase your chances of avoiding a collision, move your car as far out of the flow of traffic as you can. Further, always pay attention to road signs and police officers, as both may direct you to a safe space on the bridge.
4. Take any accident seriously
How you behave after an automobile accident often affects your ability to recover compensation for your injuries and property damage. Like you would do with any accident, take a bridge wreck seriously. Also, be sure you act responsibly to protect your legal rights.
If you drive carefully, you probably do not have to worry about having an automobile accident on a bridge. Still, because bridge accidents can be extremely dangerous, you must have a plan for both avoiding one and dealing with one. By understanding how to drive on bridges, you increase your odds of staying safe while traveling in California.