Have you ever tried changing lanes and then suddenly noticed a vehicle in the way that you didn’t see before? Chances are that the vehicle was in your blind spot which is why you couldn’t see it even in your side and rear-view mirrors. Blind spots in car driving are common and pose a safety hazard, especially in heavy traffic and crowded streets.
Blind spots in cars can occur in different areas depending on the size and design of the vehicle, but the most common areas that are obscured include the sides and rear. Blind spot-related accidents contribute to a significant record of statistics each year, which is why drivers should be aware of them.
By staying vigilant and aware of blind spots in cars, we can reduce the risk of accidents and stay safe on the road.
Importance of Being Aware of Blind Spots
Being aware of blind spots in car mirrors is crucial for safe driving. It can help drivers avoid accidents and ensure safety for themselves and their fellow passengers.
Let’s look at a few reasons why drivers should notice blind spots:
Preventing accidents is the No.1 reason you should be aware of blind spot in car driving. Just imagine taking a turn without seeing a pedestrian or cyclist beside you. It could lead to a collision or near miss, which is why drivers should use mirrors and turn signals while changing lanes.
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2. Defensive Driving
In order to anticipate and avoid potential hazards on the road, drivers should be aware of common blind spots and take steps to keep them in check. By staying one step ahead of other motorists, you can reach your destination without breaking any rules.
3. Avoid Road Rage
Driving in the way of another vehicle can cause those drivers to exhibit aggressive behaviour, especially when they think you are being negligent on the road. In reality, a blind spot may cause you to cut off another vehicle without knowing it.
4. Improved Confidence
When a driver is aware of blind spots in car mirrors while driving, they have more confidence knowing there is a low risk of a collision. This reduces stress and anxiety, making the journey more enjoyable.
5. Legal Requirement
It is often stated that drivers cannot state a blind spot as a cause for an accident. Driving tests emphasize that motorists must look out for blind spots before making a turn or changing lanes.
Types of Blind Spots in Car Driving
When it comes to blind spots in cars, there are a few types that drivers should be aware of. It could be caused by a vehicle’s design or external factors like weather or obstacles. Let’s take a close look at different types of blind spots.
- Design: Each car has a unique set of blind spots depending on its seating arrangement, viewing angles, windows and dimensions. The A-pillar, which runs between the windshield and the front door can sometimes obscure the view when taking turns, causing the driver to overlook another vehicle or pedestrian at an intersection. In the same way, the C-pillar, which divides the rear windscreen and back door can create a blind spot when changing lanes.
- Weather or external factors: Bad weather conditions such as rain, snow or fog can create blind spots, making it difficult to see obstacles on the road. Similarly, road signs or construction equipment may obscure a driver’s vision, posing a safety risk.
- Not adjusting mirrors properly: Side view and rear-view mirrors work effectively only when they are properly adjusted to match the driver’s height and seating position. The viewing angles of these mirrors should overlap slightly to cover all areas that are often overlooked. A mirror pointing in the wrong direction will make driving more difficult with a higher number of blind spots.
- Distractions: A driver distracted by his phone or infotainment device may not notice an obstacle before it’s too late. Reaction times are reduced when the driver does not have his eye on the road. Drivers should refrain from using gadgets and concentrate on defensive manoeuvres (being prepared for the unexpected).
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Techniques for Checking Blind Spots
Safe driving includes eliminating blind spots by adjusting mirrors properly, looking around your shoulder, installing detection systems for hidden obstacles on the road and basically taking extra caution while driving.
- Mirror adjustment: Before you set off on your drive, position yourself in the driver’s seat and carefully adjust each mirror until you are satisfied that all blind spots have been taken care of. Side-view mirrors should reflect a small part of your vehicle and the lane beside you. Your rear-view mirror should cover the entire rear window with a clear view.
- Head turning: Even when mirrors are properly adjusted, you will still have blind spots around the car. To check these, turn your head slightly and glance over your shoulder before making a turn or changing lanes. Do this for both the left and right sides.
- Automatic detection systems: New vehicles come with 360-degree cameras and proximity sensors that alert the driver of an obstacle in their blind spot. If you have access to these features, be sure to make use of them. Or you can even look for an aftermarket accessory to retrofit into your classic car.
- Driving position: Slouching or sitting too close to the steering wheel may cause more blind spots than if you are sitting straight. Adjust the seat to an appropriate height and keep the backrest at a 90-degree angle so that you don’t maintain the wrong posture while driving.
- Cautious driving: Be extra careful when it rains or when driving through snow or fog. Visibility is greatly reduced in bad weather conditions, so take extra caution before making a manoeuvre. Use windshield wipers to have a clear view through the windshield and wipe off the frosting on the windows.
By using these techniques, drivers can reduce the risks associated with blind spots and stay safe on the road.
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Common blind spot scenarios
Certain situations may pose problems for drivers when their view is obstructed, making it difficult to see other motorists or pedestrians. Here are some common scenarios where a blind spot may be risky.
1. Changing Lanes
Blind spots in car mirrors can make changing lanes a little tricky when you can’t see cars in adjacent lanes. Check your mirrors and look over your shoulders before you switch lanes, and use your turn indicator in advance.
2. Merging into a Road
With heavy traffic, drivers may struggle to notice oncoming vehicles before they merge into a highway. Check for vehicles in your blind spot before proceeding.
Pedestrians and cyclists often wait at intersections for traffic to clear. Look for potential hazards that are invisible in your mirrors before you enter an intersection.
Reverse parking and parallel parking can be difficult if you cannot see objects or people behind your vehicle. Back-up cameras now have eliminated blind spots but look into your mirrors just to make double sure before you park.
When passing a slow-moving or parked car, watch out for oncoming traffic or pedestrians that have not anticipated your path of travel. Use mirrors and take a quick glance over your shoulder before overtaking.
In all of the above scenarios, it is important to drive cautiously and take necessary precautions to ensure safe driving and avoid potential hazards along the way.
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Blind spots are a major hazard on the road and can lead to accidents and even fatalities. Drivers should always check mirrors, turn to check for obstacles and utilize technology like blind spot detection cameras for a safe drive.
Being vigilant and taking steps to be aware of their surroundings can go a long way in a hassle-free driving experience. Remember to be mindful in certain scenarios such as when changing lanes, merging onto highways, approaching an intersection and when parking.
The key to staying safe on the road includes taking responsibility for your driving and by following the best practices.
We hope you learnt about blind spots while driving. Explore more posts on the Carorbis blog. You may want to have a look at Why Are Blind Spot Mirrors Essential For Your Car and also What Are The Different Types Of Car Lights
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. What is Blind Spot for Vehicle Drivers?
Ans. Blind spots are areas that are not visible to drivers even with the use of mirrors. Blind spots in car driving are outside the normal field of vision and are usually found at the rear of the vehicle, making them dangerous when changing lanes or making turns. Drivers may find it hard to spot other vehicles, pedestrians or cyclists leading to an accident or near miss. It is important to adjust mirrors frequently, use turn indicators, and look over your shoulder to reduce the risk associated with blind spots while driving.
Q2. How to Check Car Blind Spot?
Ans. Quickly do a head check by physically turning and looking over your shoulder in the direction you want to move. Sometimes, obstacles may not be visible in the mirrors, but you can see them by turning around. Adjust your mirrors so that they cover as much area as possible. New cars have blind spot detection using sensors that alert the driver when there is a vehicle in your blind spot. Also, you can avoid tailgating other cars because you are likely to be in their blind spot. Drive in a defensive manner and always be aware of your surroundings.
Q3. What is Blind Spot Mirror for Car?
Ans. Blind spot mirrors attach to the side view mirrors of cars and are designed to see more of the adjacent lanes while driving. They help prevent collisions with other vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists that may be in the driver’s blind spot. Blind spot mirrors are available at car accessory stores and can be installed in minutes with little effort. A new technology used on modern cars is a blind spot detection camera that can monitor a 360-degree view around the car and alert drivers of any areas that are not visible on the road.
Q4. Which is the Best Place to Put Blind Spot Mirrors on Car?
Ans. Blind spot mirrors are usually placed on the lower, outside corner of the side view mirror where they can provide a wider angle of view. The exact placement of the blind spot mirror depends on the vehicle you are driving. You can even place a blind spot mirror on the lower side of the rearview mirror. This can help the driver with a view of the rear and sides of the car. It is advised to physically turn around in your seat to get a better view of the road. Do not rely solely on blind spot mirrors as they may not cover all viewing angles.
Q5. How to Check Blindspot When Driving?
Ans. Be aware of your surroundings while driving and adjust your mirrors to cover as much area as possible while you are seated behind the wheel. Always use turn signals at least 3 seconds before you make a turn so that other motorists or pedestrians can see you even if you can’t see them. This gives them time to adjust their speed and position and stay out of your way. Take extra care when driving in areas with heavy traffic or when changing lanes. By following these steps and being aware of the blind spots in your vehicle, you can help prevent accidents on the road.
Q6. How Many Blind Spots Does a Car Have?
Ans. The major blind spots in a vehicle are on each side and the rear. Blind spots are covered by side-view mirrors and rear-view mirrors but there can sometimes be small areas that are not visible to drivers in the areas that don’t overlap in the viewing angles of these mirrors. Larger vehicles like SUVs, trucks and buses have more blind spots due to their size and height and driver require additional mirrors/cameras to eliminate blind spots.