Becoming a Better Driver

The spring season is here, which means more daylight hours and more time spent on the roadways. This season lets refocus on what matters most while driving – our safety and the safety of others. Smart drivers make safer roads, so check out our tips, tools and resources to help you drive smart and make NJ’s roads a safer place for everyone. Find out how you can:


of people in the U.S. wear their seat belt


of fatal crashes in NJ involve a distracted driver


hours are spent behind the wheel annually in the U.S.

Slow down for spring showers

Just a small amount of rain can cause you to slip. Keep a safe distance between other cars to allow proper braking.

Don’t Tailgate

Leave a full car length of space between you and the vehicle in front of you. Remember, stopping distances are longer on slippery roads.


Share the road

Share the road with pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists and other road way users. Stay alert and expect to see more people outside during this time of year. Use caution when driving and pay extra attention to crosswalks.


As the roads clear of ice, we might bet tempted to go faster. Slow down and watch your speed, it could save a life.

Beware of potholes

Winter weather conditions and heavy rain take a toll on our roadways. Be on the lookout for these unexpected obstacles and drive slow around them. Potholes can cause severe damage to your vehicle.

Secure your seatbelt

Buckle up for your safety and ensure all passengers are properly restrained.

There is no safe way to use a cell phone while driving.
Let your passengers enjoy the sights and sounds of spring in safety.

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is one of the fastest growing safety issues on the roads today. Unfortunately, distracted drivers aren’t just putting themselves at risk: they’re a danger to everyone else on the road. It is not always easy to encourage others to put the phone down. In 2021 there were 3,522 people killed and an estimated additional 362,415 people injured in motor vehicle traffic crashes involving distracted drivers. This is an increase of 380 fatalities compared to 2020 (NHTSA). With numbers this high, we must not only take responsibility for ourselves but spread the word about the dangers of distracted driving. Below are tips to help keep you safe.

Safety Tips for Driving

  • Set an example: to your family and friends by putting your phone away.

  • Plan before you go: always set up your music or navigation before you start your trip. Also, purchase a mount for your phone, so you are not looking down away from the road.

  • Designated texter: Designate your passenger as your “designated texter.” Allow them access to your phone to respond to calls or messages.

  • Pull over to text: If you are expecting a text or need to send one, pull over and park. Once you are safely off the road, it is safe to text.

  • Do not use social media: scrolling or messaging while driving or at red lights. Cell phone use can be habit-forming. Struggling not to text and drive? Put the cell phone out of reach in your vehicle until you arrive.

Spring check-up

Have You Done Your Safety Checkup?

You might be familiar with using Daylight Saving as your cue to check smoke detector batteries. That’s smart. But this year, you should also be adding a few other safety routines to your list. These include recalls on cars, child seats, tires, the safety of your bicycle and fitting of your helmet.

Checking for recalls is simple but essential. Why is this important? In 2023, 35 million cars and trucks were affected by recalls. other people on the road at risk.

Take these three steps toward a safer vehicle.

  1. Find your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). The 17-character VIN is like your vehicle’s Social Security Number. It’s a unique code that identifies a car or truck
  2. Search using your VIN at gov/Recalls. Your search will tell you if there’s an open safety recall affecting your vehicle and what steps to take.
  3. Get your vehicle repaired immediately if you have an open recall.

Safety recalls can also affect child car seats and tires. You can check for those at, too.

Railroad Safety – Railroad crossing incidents and fatalities are a long-standing problem, but they are easily avoidable. Click here to learn about staying safe on the tracks this spring.


Pledge to Share the Road

Each day you’re on the road with thousands of other parents, teachers, mothers, fathers, and kids in all types of vehicles. From cars and trucks to buses and motorcycles – we’re all sharing the road. Join us in becoming a smarter, safer driver.


There’s Always More to Learn.

New Jersey has a variety of special initiatives to help improve the safety of drivers, passengers and pedestrians on our roads. Check out these sites for more great info:

Check Out These Must Watch Videos

Champion Schools

Get involved in Our Teen Safe Driving Program!