How High-Risk Driving Can Be Costly

You come to an intersection and spot a small window of opportunity to merge into oncoming traffic. Do you put the pedal to the metal and take your chance? Or, do you wait until you’re 100 percent sure you can merge with traffic in a safe manner? My hope is that your answer was the latter. However, if you happen to be more of a “risk taker” I can assure you that your non-defensive driving methods are going to cost you in the long run.

Risk Taker = High-Risk Driver

It might seem cool to get behind the wheel of a car buzzed or to zig and zag in and out of traffic at rapid speed, but it’s not worth the risk. Those who don’t follow the rules of the road and get caught doing it, ultimately become labeled high risk drivers. Habitual offenses could then lead to hefty traffic fines, a ruined driving history, a suspended license, and more.

Should a judge find you to be a repeat offender, you may be required to obtain an auto insurance policy that is specifically designed for high-risk drivers known as SR22 insurance. This is essentially an insurance policy with an additional document that must be filed with the courthouse. This SR22 document verifies that you have adequate insurance coverage. The best and cheapest SR22 insurance policies out there can help make any additional costs negligible.

I don’t know about you, but for me, I’d like my hard earned cash to be invested into something a lot better than tickets, fines, and high insurance costs.

But What Constitutes a High-Risk Driver?

Let’s take a closer look at driving personalities that could end up paying for it in the future:

The Speed Demon

While going 5-10 mph over the speeding limit is common (but not advised), the speed demon is the type of driver that always has their foot to the floor. When the speed limit is 65, they’re pushing 85mph and better. Whether they’re late for work or heading out for a night with friends, speed limit signs hold no weight. Driving at high speeds obviously makes it more likely for them to get in an accident, and unfortunately, it will be a nasty one as it can be hard to control a vehicle at high speeds.

What’s the cost of being a speed demon? Well, Investopedia points out that someone who speeds could receive a ticket and court fees of up to $150 for a first offense, a 10-25 percent increase in insurance costs, and an extra $0.19 to $1.26 per gallon in gas costs. My advice, stay within 5-10 mph.

The “Stoned” or “Wasted” Driver

So you’re young, you like to go out and party and have a good time. You’re famous for getting a bit “buzzed” or “high,” but you’ve been driving yourself home stoned or wasted for a few years now and there’s nothing to it. Okay, so maybe by the grace of God you were able to make it safely home once or twice in your life after a party, but driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a serious risk to take. Drugs and alcohol impair your vision, reflexes, and reaction time making it highly likely to end up in a really bad accident.

Even if you’re lucky enough to have never been in an accident, you’re looking at some serious costs. Driving under the influence on the first offense could set you back a few hundred dollars in traffic tickets. However, second and third offenses could result in court costs, the need for legal representation, a serious hike in your insurance costs, the potential for a revoked driver’s license, and so much more.

Thinking about heading out on the road under the influence? Even if you feel okay to drive, just don’t do it. Time allows the substance to wear off. If you can’t wait it out, turn over your keys and ask someone who isn’t under the influence to take you home.

The Distracted Driver

This driver is known for texting while driving or turning around and screaming or swatting at the kids in the back seat. Things going on around you can easily distract you from what’s most important – the road. Though the hope is that other drivers are defensive enough to avoid you, it’s not always easy. You’re unpredictable. The sound of the phone ringing could cause you to drive right through a red light or veer off the side of the road.

The distracted driver could end up with a host of tickets ranging from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. My advice, pay attention to the road and tune everything else out. If something is really important, pull over, handle it, and then hop back on the road.

The crazy thing about all of the above drivers is that they could be to your left or to your right on the road and you’d never know. If you’ve recognized yourself in any of these personalities, it’s time to take a defensive driving course or two. It might seem lame to follow the rules of the road, but to be quite honest; it is the safest bet…. not to mention the most affordable. 


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