computer room - photo by Buchachon Petthanya
In 2011, an average of 89 people were killed on U.S. roadways each day. The number of people killed have, however, been slowly declining since the late sixties.

Still, many states require you to take a defensive driving course if you accumulated too many points on your driving records or before you can have your driving privilege reinstated after a suspension.

The requirements and benefits of taking a defensive driving course vary with each state. Basic defensive driving courses are between four and eight hours. Some states allow you to take the course online or by watching a DVD. Others require a classroom setting. The typical cost is $25-$30.

By taking a defensive driving course you can also get lower auto insurance premiums in some states. This makes the defensive driving course a real good bargain, even when you are not required to take one. Check the rules in your state.

The idea with a defensive driving course is to teach you to be more cautious and maintain an awareness of your surroundings. A good defensive driving strategy is to know how recognize potential hazards on the road and protect yourself and others from traffic crashes.

A defensive driving course is a refresher of many things you learned when you got your license, but it also goes beyond the current laws and rules of the road. It tends to give you a lot more information about crash prevention techniques. Knowing what to do in a dangerous situation can save your life.

A safe driver always scans the roadway and adapts to surroundings. Looking well ahead of the vehicle to see hazards as early as possible is one of the key strategies.

You should also check your mirrors frequently to know what is happening around your vehicle at all times. Be aware of reaction distance and know how your stopping distance is affected.