Defensive driving is a terrific way to actively take part in how safe you are on the road. With proper defensive driving, you not only drive in a safe manner yourself, but you attempt to minimize your danger by assuming that other drivers may not be so careful as you predict the risks you’ll face.
Doing this means you do far more than just following the law. For instance, maybe the speed limit is 55 miles per hour. You’re required to follow it, and so you do. As a legal driver, that’s enough. As a defensive driver, when someone comes up behind you at 60 miles per hour and starts to tailgate, you’ll change lanes or even pull over to allow them to pass.
Why do you do it? Because you can assume that tailgating drivers will not have enough time to stop in an emergency. You can predict that they will rear-end your car. You could follow the law and wait for them to make a mistake and hit you, or you could take an active role and reduce the risk.
It defensive driving enough to keep you safe? Unfortunately, even this proactive approach is not always enough. You could look both ways after a light turns green and then slowly, carefully start into the intersection — only to see a speeding driver come over a hill and run the red light. You could move over for that tailgating driver and let them pass, only to get hit by the next driver, who is texting and driving as he or she drifts onto the shoulder.
Defensive driving helps, but accidents still happen. If you get injured, you may be able to seek compensation for medical bills and related costs.