As far as courtesy on the road goes, the image of the professional van driver is not a good one. If you run a man and van service, consider whether you are contributing to the aggressive “white van man” stereotype. By being more considerate and reducing your anger behind the wheel, you will not only make the roads safer for yourself and other drivers; you will also improve the image of man and van companies as a whole.
Top tips for safer driving:
- Get enough sleep. Do not drive when you are too tired to do so safely. Don’t let exhaustion make you short-tempered.
- Stay calm. Try not to engage in emotionally charged conversations with passengers or colleagues in the vehicle. Arguments are likely to cause aggressive driving, and impatience can cause accidents.
- Keep your distance. If you see another road user driving irresponsibly, give him or her some extra space. Do not put yourself at risk of injury by driving too close to someone who is driving poorly.
- Be tolerant. Although it can be annoying when another driver cuts in front of you, don’t overreact. You wouldn’t be aggressive or abusive if someone cut in front of you in a shop, so don’t let it aggravate you when you’re driving.
- Plan ahead. Running late will make you feel stressed before you’ve even left the house. You need to allow enough time to reach your destination without speeding. Add fifteen minutes to your expected travel time, then you’ll have time to stop at the petrol station and navigate unexpected roadworks without getting agitated.
- Take breaks regularly. When driving long distances, remember to pull over and take a break. Have a walk around and get something to eat to stay awake and focused.
One great way to reduce stress when you’re driving is to listen to music, or even better sing! We’ve been asking our Twitter followers recently what they like to listen to when they’re stressed on the road. Join in the conversation using the tag #trafficjamsongs, or leave us a comment below.