Knowing how to reverse a car safely and efficiently is critical to the safety of the driver and individuals in the area who share the road or utilize nearby sidewalks (other motorists, cyclists, pedestrians). It is also a skill that you will be graded on when taking the Illinois and Michigan driving test.
8 Recommended Steps for Reversing a Car Safely:
- Be certain nothing is directly behind your vehicle.
- Inside the vehicle, check behind, adjust seat properly, check mirror adjustment, fasten your safety belt and start the engine.
- Check side-to-side clearance.
- Depress brake pedal to prevent the vehicle from moving abruptly and place transmission in reverse.
- Turn your body and look through the rear window. Re-check side clearance.
- Place your left hand on top of the wheel.
- Back slowly. Gradually release the brake pedal to begin backing. With automatic transmission, you can control your speed by using the brake pedal alone.
- Come to a complete stop before turning to face forward.
Safe Backing Saves Lives
Every year thousands of children are killed because a driver backed out of a driveway without checking his or her surroundings. Thankfully back up cameras are now a standard feature in all new vehicles, and while they can help, they are not a substitute for the recommended safety steps previously mentioned. By following the eight safety steps for reversing, you’re performing due diligence and ensuring the safety of those in and around your vehicle.
It’s equally important to keep your vehicle running efficiently so that you can avoid any potential safety issues and costly vehicle repairs. Download the Top Driver Vehicle Maintenance Checklist to keep your motor running and your family safe from potentially life threatening hazards. You can also contact us with any questions.