The California Driving Laws Coming Into Effect

Safe driving involves ensuring that you’re always following the law – and in the state of California, there are plenty of new laws that are being introduced.   If you want to ensure that you’re following these laws, take a look at the biggest changes you need to be aware of:

  • There are plenty of accidents that occur between cyclists and vehicles.  That’s why the state of California is introducing a new law that impacts the mandatory passing distance you should keep between your car and a bicycle.  According to this new law, vehicles should only pass a cyclist who is traveling in the same direction when they can maintain a distance of three feet between the cyclist and the vehicle.  If you’re unable to achieve this minimum distance, the law requires you to slow down and wait until it is safe to go around the cyclist.  If you fail to follow this law, you can incur a fine, even if you don’t collide with the cyclist.  Please note that this law comes into effect September 16, 2014.

 

  • Another law that is coming into effect is that no vehicle’s title or registration can be transferred to a family member unless all parking fees and tolls have been paid first.  This also includes transference to a revocable living trust.  Violation fines and penalties must be paid by the person transferring the vehicle in order for the title and registration to be changed to another family member’s name.

 

  • In order to encourage safe driving with teens, the state of California will prohibit a person under the age of 18 from using an electronic wireless communications device to send, read or write a text.  This law is still valid even if the teen is using a hands-free device.  Failing to comply with this law can invoke heavy penalties and fines.

 

  • California is now extending the amount of time in which low-emission and zero-emission vehicles can use the HOV lane.  This law was enacted in order to help alleviate much of the traffic problems in metropolitan areas.

 

Please note that all of these laws for 2014 are currently in effect, unless otherwise noted.

For more information about safe driving and following the law, visit www.4safedrivers.com.

How to Keep Your Teen Driver Safe on the Road

When it comes to safe driving, you want to ensure that your teen will always be protected whenever he or she is in the car.  While you can teach your teen all the safe driving tips you want, there may come a time when your teen may encounter an emergency situation or scenario that requires advanced driving techniques.  If you want to keep your teen driver safe on the road, try imparting the following advice and tips when teaching him or her how to drive:

  1. Teach your teen driver how to change a flat.  Flat tires can happen at anytime, and they can be quite terrifying when they do occur.  If you want to prevent your teen from panicking, it’s important to supply him or her with the knowledge and confidence he or she needs to change the tire.  Walk your teen through the process a few times before having him or her change a tire.  If you don’t know how to change a tire yourself, consider learning how alongside your teen.  You can stay cool and calm on the road by empowering yourself with safe driving knowledge.
  2. Provide your teen with emergency supplies to keep in the car.  These supplies should include an emergency hammer, which can be used to break the windshield; flares that can be placed on the road in the event of a breakdown; water and blankets to stay warm if it’s cold; the number of AAA or another roadside assistance service; and tools that he or she might need for changing a flat tire.
  3. Walk your teen through some of the more common emergencies that might happen on the road.  Tell them to remain calm and to call AAA if the car breaks down, or encourage them to call 911 and drive to a local police station if they encounter an aggressive driver.  Be sure to tell your teen – especially female teens – to ask for badge numbers before getting out of the car for a policeman.  Many criminals dress up like police officers to pull over women and rob them, or worse.  Staying safe on the road involves having your wits about you – and you should drill that into your teen’s head as much as possible.

 

For more safe driving tips for your teen, visit www.4safedrivers.com.

The Biggest Do’s and Don’ts of Teaching Your Teen Safe Driving

You want your teen to be safe on the road; that’s why you’ve made a commitment to teach your teen the art of safe driving, no matter how stressed or frustrated you might become during the process.  While you’re trying to stay cool and calm throughout the process, you may make certain mistakes, many of which will be innocuous in nature.  To ensure that your teen focuses on learning about safe driving – rather than getting annoyed and frustrated with you – then try using these tips while teaching your teen how to drive:

 

  • Do stay as cool and as calm as possible.  While it can be frustrating to teach your teen something that seems second nature to you, it’s important to realize that your teen is currently going through an anxious and fearful time.  Think back to when you first started to drive; chances are you were terrified about merging on the highway, parallel parking, and doing other things that you now take for granted.  Have a little patience, or take a deep breath whenever you feel tempted to yell at your teen for making a mistake.

 

  • Don’t teach your teen to drive on a busy or residential road.  The first time your teen learns to drive should be in a relatively empty parking lot, where there’s little chance that your teen will be nervous about oncoming cars.  Only when your teen starts to feel confident should you move to the streets – and when it’s time for that, you should select a street that’s not very busy.

 

  • Do point out your teen’s successes as well as his or her mistakes.  When teaching your teen how to drive safely, it may be tempting to just point out the mistakes.  However, this can be intimidating for the teen who is just learning how to drive.  Compliment your teen for performing certain tasks well, as this can ensure that you’re building up his or her confidence levels.

 

  • Don’t pressure your teen into practice.  If your teen is starting to feel overwhelmed during driving practice, you should have your teen pull over the car on the side of the road.  This can give your teen the chance to take a deep breath and let go of his or her frustrations.

 

To learn more about safe driving techniques for teens, visit www.4safedrivers.com.

How to Dispute a Speeding Ticket

One minute, you’re driving along the road, whistling to your favorite song on the radio – the next minute, you’re staring down at a police officer who just handed you a ticket for speeding.  While you’ve always considered yourself a safe driver, you now have a speeding record – and if you want to maximize your chances of getting your dream job, you need to erase that ticket from your driving record pronto.

To protect your employment future and erase the ticket from your driving record, here are the steps you need to take to dispute a speeding ticket:

  • Always be polite and cooperative with your police officer as soon as you’re pulled over.  It’s harder to dispute a speeding ticket when you talk back to the police officer, because he or she is going to ensure that you get stuck with that speeding ticket.

 

  • Never admit that you were speeding.  If the officer asks why you got pulled over, admit you don’t know, and never admit to what you were doing.  If you make an admission, the police officer can use it against you in a court of law.

 

  • Check your ticket for inaccuracies.  If you spot one, ask the officer to correct it immediately, as this could hurt you in the court.  If there are inaccuracies that could help your case, however, keep quiet, as this will help the speeding ticket get dismissed.

 

  • Record details, take pictures, mark down where you got pulled over, and take notes about the police officer’s position.  All of these details will help you in court, and you don’t want to rely on memory to help you make your case.

 

  • Follow the directions on the fine print of the ticket. This is usually where you’ll find information about where to submit your dispute, and what steps you should take to dispute this speeding ticket.  Calculate the cost of fighting the ticket against paying it; if you’ll pay more to fight the ticket, you might want to see how this is going to impact your finances.

 

  • If you can afford it – and depending on the severity of the speeding ticket – consider hiring a lawyer to help your case.  This can ensure that your case is successful, and it can ease your mind as you won’t be responsible for gathering all of your evidence.

For more safe driving techniques, visit www.4safedrivers.com.

How to Become a Safe Driver

Safe driving may seem to be common sense at first; but for whatever reason, once you’re behind the wheel of a car, you just can’t resist those dangerous driving behaviors.  Maybe you have a penchant for speeding, or perhaps your life is so busy that your long commute gives you the opportunity to multi-task.  Whatever the case may be, distracted and dangerous driving habits have made a mess of your driving history

And you’re ready to clean your act up.

Having a safe driving record (or DMV report) is critical for living a successful life.  Think about it this way: a sub-par driving record can prevent you from getting a job, getting cheaper premiums on your insurance, and even mess with your credit score (especially if you let any unpaid tickets linger).  When you have a clean driving record, there’s nothing but open road ahead of you.

If you want to learn how to become a safe driver, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Recognize the situations that tempt you into engaging in unsafe driving habits.  For example, if you continually speed more than twenty miles above the speed limit, recognize what behaviors propel you to this habit.  Do you tend to speed when you’re late for work or an event?  Or do you speed because you hate getting stuck behind slow drivers?  Recognize your reason and learn how to curtail those habits.  For example:
  • Make sure you leave enough time for you to get to work or an event.
  • If you’re stuck behind a slow driver, don’t get angry.  Instead, take a few deep breaths, put on a song you love, and enjoy having a few moments to yourself.
  1. Keep distracted driving tools out of reach, like your cell phone, as this will help you resist the urge to text.  With this in mind, keep all toll money, garage passes, and other related driving tools within easy reach.  This can prevent you from being distracted while driving, which can lower your chances for getting into an accident.
  1. If you’re prone to road rage – which can lead to accidents, speeding tickets, and other moving violations – find a way to work out your anger outside of the car.  Start hitting the gym more or pick up a hobby that makes you feel relaxed and fulfilled.  Road rage can often be symptomatic of deeper issues, so try to work them out before you get behind the wheel.

Use these tips to become a safer driver – and get your driving records clean again!

Tougher DUI and Driving Laws Designed to Create Safe Drivers in North Dakota

If you’re a resident of North Dakota, chances are that you’ve heard about tougher DUI laws that are meant to curb the amount of arrests that police officers and attorneys pursue each and every year.  However, if you think that your chances of escaping penalties for DUI and other driving laws are increasing, think again: lawmakers are more confident that their jobs won’t be hindered by tougher legislation

These new laws, which take effect on August 1st, increases minimum penalties for most driving law offenses, which might ease the burden from some otherwise safe drivers.  In addition to increasing the minimum penalty, Governor Jack Dalrymple has also increased the number of years that can pass before a subsequent DUI will be considered a first offense again (seven years as opposed to five years)

While the new laws certainly favor drivers as opposed to attorneys and public safety officials, unsafe drivers who might be eager to hit the roads again should think before driving under the influence.  A new program – known as the 24/7 Sobriety Program – will require drivers who have been convicted of a DUI to undergo breath-alcohol tests twice a day at the cost of $2 each day ($1 per test).  This can put a severe hassle on anyone who has to lead a busy life, which legislators are counting on to be a deterrent for those considering the dangerous decision to drink and drive.

The 24/7 program works by using sobriety tests to determine if a convicted DUI offender has had any alcohol.  If the test proves to be positive, offenders will be taken into custody; offenders who refuse to take the test will immediately have their bond revoked.

Proponents of the 24/7 program already point to its incredible success, noting that 98% of participants are successful in completing this program.  Judges are already hoping to use this innovative program to ensure that parole is successful in DUI cases, as well as alcohol- and drug crimes, as well as domestic violence or child abuse cases. In addition to this program, drivers who are pulled over for a suspected DUI can no longer refuse to take the test, as this will result in them being automatically charged with a DUI.

So what’s the lesson you can learn from these new North Dakota driving laws?  While the legislature may seem to favor drivers, there’s no denying that the DUI penalties make it pay to be a safe driver.

Safe Driving Tips for Sudden Summer Rainstorms

Summer is here, and with that means plenty of road trips – and if you live in an area that’s prone to rain, you might have more than your fair share of experience with sudden summer rainstorms.  Summer rainstorms are more than just a light sprinkling of rain – they can be very intense downpours that lead to extremely dangerous situations on the road.

If you happen to be caught in one of these sudden summer rainstorms, here’s what you can do to maintain your safe driving:

  • No matter how confident you may be in your driving skills, it pays to slow down.  Slowing down or stopping on a wet road is much more difficult, which can pose a variety of dangerous situations should the car come to a sudden stop in front of you.  No matter how good your tires might be, they won’t save you should you need to come to a quick stop from 70 mph in the rain.
  • Slowly and safely merge to the middle lane in the highway.  Rain puddles tend to form on the outer lanes, which could result in hydroplaning (when your wheels lock up and skid out of control).
  • Try not to use your brakes to avoid this hydroplaning effect.  If you need to slow down, take your foot off the accelerator until you’ve achieved your ideal speed.
  • Don’t try to pass large trucks or buses.  The spray from the larger vehicles can case your car to suddenly hydroplane and significantly reduce your visibility of the road.
  • Turn your headlights on in the rain, but don’t use your high beams, as this can obscure your visibility should fog follow the rainstorm.  If you want to ensure that the cars behind you can see you, consider driving with your emergency lights on.
  • Avoid driving through puddles, especially if you can’t gauge the depth of the water.  With that in mind, never drive through fast-flowing water, as this could sweep your car away.

 

If you find that it’s difficult to drive even with these safe driving tips, consider moving off to the emergency lane (ideally under a bridge or overpass) and waiting for the rain to pass altogether.

The Best Safe Driving Tips for Nighttime Traveling

Whether you commute home from work in the dark or you’re driving during night to avoid daytime traffic on your road trip, driving at night can come with certain hazards and dangers.  From nocturnal animal activity to vision impairment, safe driving tips are absolutely necessary for staying on the road during your nighttime travels.

No matter where your travels may take you, here are the best safe driving tips for nighttime traveling:

  1. Remember that your vision will be much more impaired at night than driving during the day.  After all, it’s easy to see animals and pedestrians at night, which it’s why it’s important to stay awake and alert when driving on the road at night.  For example, don’t just merge into a lane because you don’t see headlights from another car in the next lane.  Look in your blind spot as you would driving during the day before making your move, as this can help you avoid getting into an accident with a driver without his or her headlights on.
  1. Eye fatigue can be a common occurrence when driving at night, as our eyes are constantly straining to see ahead of us.  To prevent your eyes from getting tired – and falling asleep on the road – move your eyes around whenever possible.  Try moving them from side to side and near to far ahead when it’s safe to do so.
  1. Use your headlights wisely.  Refrain from using your high beams on the highway, as this can impair the vision of drivers on the other side of the road.  If your high beams are on, show some courtesy by turning your high beams to low beams when passing another vehicle.  If a driver doesn’t give you the same courtesy, don’t be afraid to flick your lights at him or her.  After all, it’s better to be proactive with your safety.
  1. Refrain from speeding on the roads when driving at night.  Because you can only see as far ahead as your highlights, this won’t give you enough time to stop should something suddenly appear.  Slow down your speeds, especially on windy back roads.
  1. If you need to pull off the road at night, make sure you’re as far away as possible from the main road.  Turn on your emergency lights so other vehicles can see you.

Use these safe driving tips to stay on the road during your nocturnal travels.

How to Avoid Driving Record Frauds

When it comes to ordering a driving record online, you want the service to be as quick and painless as possible.  After all, you’re probably ordering this driving record because you need to apply for a job or change an error in your DMV report – and you don’t exactly have time to sit around and wait in frustratingly long lines at the Department of Motor Vehicles.

However, the desire to get your driving records as quickly – and cheaply – as possible could leave you vulnerable to driving record frauds.  There are plenty of online driving records services out there that promise to deliver you your personal driving records for cheap – but then will charge your credit card an astounding amount of money in a never-ending subscription.

Consumer groups have just caught wind of these groups after similar debacles with credit report companies, which would promise users a “free” credit report, only to secretly charge them a monthly fee just for the privilege.  These tricks are usually buried deep within the terms and conditions of the website, but they’re still considered “predatory,” as they’re meant to trick people into opting into a regular subscription.

To avoid falling into this trap when ordering your driving record online, watch out for these warning signs:

  • If something seems too cheap to be true, then it definitely is – especially when it comes to driving records.  Services that charge only a $1 for you to see your driving records (like DMV.us.org, for example) are typically making their money through subscriptions, which will be contained deep within the terms and conditions of the site.  It usually costs a vendor between $3 to $28 to order a driving record online, so anything less than this is usually indicative of a subscription-based service.
  • If another service promises you that you can view someone else’s driving record, you should avoid this service at all costs.  You can’t view a driving record without someone’s written permission (usually in the form of a consent form), so any service that promises you otherwise should be reported to consumer agencies immediately.

Remember, if a service seems too good to be true, it usually is.  4SafeDrivers.com is a reputable service that offers real and reliable driving record results that can be sent to you by U.S. mail or to your email inbox.  When it comes to driving record searches, use a trusted name – use 4SafeDrivers.com.

How to Report an Error on Your Driving Record

When it comes to landing the job of your dreams, you want to ensure that everything on your resume looks absolutely perfect.  This includes your cover letter, your employment history, and even your background check.  If you’ve taken care of all of these details, then you should feel confident knowing that you’re going to land the job of your dreams.

However, if you keep getting passed up on various employment opportunities, you may want to take a closer look at your driving records.  Although the instance is rare, there may be a clerical error that could be preventing you from landing a steady paycheck.  The state of Georgia’s DMV made headlines recently because an independent audit reported that a huge number of state driving records contained a number of clerical errors due to inaccurate reporting.  While this is just one specific example of errors contained on driving records, the truth is that this phenomenon can happen – and it can prevent you from getting the job of your dreams.

To determine if you have any errors on your driving records, consider taking the following steps:

  • Order a copy of your driving record through 4SafeDrivers.com.  This is an easy and intuitive step, as you only have to submit your personal information to the website to retrieve your driving record.  Most requests take less than a business day to turn around, which sure beats waiting in long lines at your local DMV office.
  • Scan through your driving record report.  If you notice any errors, make a note of them.  This is a critical step, as you’ll need to have this information ready when you call your local DMV office.
  • Call or visit your DMV office to report the errors.  If you have any receipts for paid tickets, bring this with you, as this can help prove your case to the DMV office.  If you have any speeding offenses or DUI arrests erroneously reported, a simple police report search can demonstrate your innocence.
  • If your DMV refuses to work with you, don’t give up so easily.  Contact your State Representative to let them know about the troubles you’ve been having in getting your driving record reported.  A simple request from the State Representative can make the DMV quickly correct your driving record.

Getting your driving record fixed can be a hassle, but it can be done; just use these steps to ensure that your driving record is error-free.

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