Lock Up Before, Sober Up After Partying It Up on New Year’s

Posted on December 30, 2013

calendar-with-payment-date New Year’s Day and New Year’s Eve are lucrative for car thieves — and a bummer for those partiers who find their ride gone.

Drunk drivers who get behind the wheel can also expect a bummer of a time, whether it’s because of the accident they might get into or the cop that’ll likely pull them over.

So before turning that last calendar page on 2013, drivers everywhere should heed some theft prevention and sober driving tips, as well as some insurance protection advice about car thefts and drunk driving.

New Year’s Day, Eve Are Peak Days for Car Thefts

The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) compiles an annual list of holiday thefts, ranking the number of thefts that occur on each holiday of the year. The reports highlight a trend for car thieves: They are out in full force during New Year’s Day and New Year’s Eve

Read more …

Driving in Old Age: Liberty Mutual Tries to Jump-start Dialogue with ‘Age Suit’

Posted on November 8, 2013

Older coupleFederal officials estimate that the elderly population (those 65 years or older) is about 40 million, by their latest count.

With the figure estimated to hit 72 million by 2030, more and more American families will be having (or trying to have) the conversation with elderly drivers about handing over their keys and giving up their driving privileges.

Liberty Mutual created its “age suit” with those conversations mind.

Profiled in a blog entry from The New York Times, the insurer’s “age suit” replicates the experience of driving in old age for those who haven’t quite made it there yet.

Blogger Benjamin Preston outlines what the suit entails.

Read more …

Going Too Fast? Insurance Institute Takes Long Look at Speed Limits

Posted on September 26, 2013

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) released a comprehensive list this month of speed limits state-by-state, a handy tool for motorists across the U.S. wondering if they’re going too fast. In the eyes of safety advocates like the IIHS, you probably are.

States are, in general, raising speed limits, said Russ Rader, spokesman for IIHS.

At the same time, officials are combating speeders with more automated enforcement cameras. By IIHS’s count, there are 136 communities nationwide that have speed camera programs.

It’s no secret that a car weighed down by a speeding violation will have a higher car insurance bill compared to one without a violation.

According to the IIHS, there are lives that are at risk when it comes to curbing speeding.

Read more …

Distracted Driving Risks Continue to Pile Up

Posted on July 15, 2013

A man is distracted while driving When we say the risks for distracted driving are piling up, we mean it in a couple different ways.

For one, studies are showing new kinds of riskiness for distracted drivers when they’re behind the wheel. Secondly, authorities are starting to make sure those risky drivers pay for being distracted.

So if you think that you’re a driver that can still be safe when you’re distracted, think again. And rethink it some more if it seems like driving distracted isn’t something that police have caught onto yet.

Risks Still Exist with Voice-Activated Technology

Distracted driving is a relatively new traffic safety concern, and one of the prevailing beliefs in public discussions has been that drivers need to use their hands and eyes properly while driving.

Read more …

Lane-Splitting Motorcyclists: What Are the Rules of the Road?

Posted on July 2, 2013

A motorcycle lane-splittingAs the hot sun hangs high here in summertime California, motorcyclists hit the freeways with those revved and chopped sounds that accompany their steel steeds.

It’s when you — the typical motorist — is stuck in gridlock that those revs and chops zip past your window. Now you’re wondering if those motorcyclists have any traffic rules to obey at all. 

Trust us, motorcyclists have plenty of rules on the road, even when it comes to lane-splitting (also known as lane-sharing).

What’s lacking, however, is research on the topic. Studies have shown that lane-splitting can contribute to somewhere around five percent of all motorcycle crashes, according to this 2010 report out of Oregon, which added that the finding “should be considered with caution” because lane-splitting wasn’t pegged as the direct cause of those crashes.

Read more …