There are several formerly popular country and western songs that talk about seeing things in your rear-view mirror. The basic idea is most of us like to see the past behind us, telling us we’re moving on to brighter days and greener pastures.
However, there are many things you don’t want to glance up and see in your car’s mirrors. Some are the substance of fantasy, and others regular gimmicks used in the movies. Still other glimpse will reveal situations that call for immediate action. Here is a list of 5 things we hope you don’t see in your rear-view mirror anytime soon:
- The looming radiator grill of a large 18-wheeler. We’ve all been there, seeing that tail-gating semi that is telling you to move over. One way to avoid this dangerous situation is to drive in the left lane only to pass a slower vehicle, returning to the right lane as soon as you have passed. Those large trucks take hundreds of yards to stop, and you don’t want to be part of that process – it doesn’t end well.
- A bouncing baby seat is one situation no one wants to see behind them. Unfortunately, every year some parents fail to take grocery bags, baby seats, purses, cups of coffee, and other items off the roof of their car after unlocking the door. These items can present real safety hazards, and cause a lot of hassle. Never set your phone, wallet or purse on the car while gassing up your vehicle – it’s easy to get distracted and simply drive off and only remember miles down the road or when you see it in your rear-view mirror, fluttering off and under the wheels of a car.
- Any of your auto parts belong on your car, not on the road in your mirror. This one of easiest traffic school answers known to drivers. There are endless stories of drivers looking up and seeing mufflers, bumpers, u-joints, and other parts bouncing off down the road behind them. Professional truck drivers have seen it all, including wheels and tires coming off and cars careening out of control. Regular preventative maintenance is always a wise and safe practice, and may help you avoid one of these unfortunate scenes.
- Spooky eyes in the mirror or a bad guy with a gun aren’t something many of us have to worry about, but be honest now. After all those movies, isn’t it hard to not be a little worried about what you might see on that dark road on a dark night when you cautiously glance up at that rear-view mirror?
- The Blue Light Special is never something you want to see when you are looking back. If you zoom by that hidden trooper on the side, you can spend several anxious moments studying that road in the rear-view mirror, waiting to see those lights come on and that trooper pull out. Of course, obeying the speed laws is one way of gaining peace of mind about that problem, but we all have that impulse and ask that question, “Did he get me or not?”
If you’ve seen one too many flashing lights in your rear-view mirror, you will find some comfort in knowing about your option to attend traffic schools and defensive driving courses. Your state DMV and county traffic courts may work together to offer a way to lower your fines, have a ticket dismissed, or have your penalty points eliminated or masked.
States and localities are under a lot of pressure to keep accident rates low, and they are held accountable for traffic law enforcement. The main reason these traffic officials and courts often refer drivers to private traffic schools for defensive driving and traffic safety course is they work. Drivers who take refresher courses, whether in classrooms or online, become better and safer drivers and make the roads safer for everyone.
Additionally, because such driving courses are proven to lower accident rates, you may find your insurance company offers a discount for successfully completing such a course. Even if you don’t have a moving violation, it’s worth checking with your insurance company to see what kind of safe driver discounts are available. With a little luck and effort, your glances in the rear-view mirror will be pleasant ones.