There are many steps that passengers can take to protect themselves, the driver, and other passengers. There are some states that even regulate safety for drivers and passengers by requiring that teenage drivers can only have one passenger under the age of 21 who is not a member of the driver’s family in the car.
Aceable recommends that passengers follow the following safety suggestions:
Always wear a seat belt
No matter where a passenger sits in the vehicle, they should always have their seat belt on provided that they are adults or older teenagers. There are additional safety belt and restraint requirements for infants, toddlers, and young children.
Help the driver keep his or her eyes on the road
Passengers have the luxury of looking at the scenery while they’re riding in a vehicle. What they shouldn’t do though is encourage the driver to take his or her eyes off the roads by exclaiming that there’s something beautiful to look at or there’s an accident on the roadway to see.
Help the driver navigate to the destination
Drivers should never look at their GPS system while driving. A passenger can help by looking at the GPS system and then informing the driver which way to turn, which road to take, and other directional issues. If a passenger doesn’t have access to a GPS system, then he can help the driver by using a map or just by looking at the road signs.
Take control of the radio
Passengers can also help the driver avoid distractions by being the person who adjusts the radio, adjusts the defroster or heater, or adjusts the air conditioning controls.
Make any calls or answer any texts on behalf of the driver
Drivers should have both hands on the steering wheel, both eyes on the road, and their minds focused on traffic at all times. If drivers need to communicate with anybody, the passenger should be the one to make a phone call or receive a phone call. Passengers can also help by reminding the driver that they shouldn’t be using their cellphone for talking or texting in any way while driving.
Keep calm, and carry on
Everything Aceable recommends comes down to this one rule: as a passenger, you can help protect yourself and the driver by keeping a cool head. Engaging in friendly banter or singing along with the radio are just fine, but the car is the wrong place to pick a fight or play a game with the driver. Instead, act as a second set of eyes and ears.
At Biby Law Firm, our car accident lawyers fight for passengers, drivers, pedestrians, and bicycle riders. We demand that irresponsible drivers pay damages for your pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, and damage to your vehicle. To speak with an experienced car attorney, call us at 918-574-8458 or use our contact form to schedule an appointment. Our Tulsa lawyers represent accident victims throughout Oklahoma.
Jacob Biby has spent his legal career helping folks just like you get the resources they need after an injury. He completed his undergraduate degree at Oklahoma State University and earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of Tulsa in 2008. Jacob is licensed to practice in all Oklahoma state and federal courts, and has limited his career to representing individuals and families who were injured by the negligence of other people or corporations. Learn more about Jacob Biby.