SGI is providing motorists with several driving tips in an aim to prevent collisions, especially as winter conditions blanket the province’s roadways.

SGI Manager of Communications Tyler McMurchy said many people think impaired driving is one of the main reasons for collisions in Saskatchewan, but he says that is not the case. Instead, impaired driving accounts for the most fatal collisions in the province.

“The actual number of impaired driving collisions compared to the total is not high. It’s typically 700 a year out of 30,000,” McMurchy states.

SGI’s tips for avoiding costly collisions are to drive the speed limit, be diligent at intersections, drive according to road conditions, maintain a three second following distance, and avoid distracted driving.

SGI Director of Driver Examination Services Shay Shpak said removing your eyes from the road for more than two seconds, whether you’re on your phone, drinking, smoking, eating, or applying makeup, significantly increases the likelihood of crashing.

In addition, Shpak adds the ideal following distance is about three seconds.

“Pick a stationary object on the road, say a sign or a pavement marking, and when the back bumper of the car in front of you passes that object, then you start counting (to three), and then the front of your vehicle should be at that same stationary object,” Shpak notes.

If you do not reach three seconds, that means you are following too closely behind, and you should drop back and count again to reduce the risk of collision.

Although you might think you’re doing someone a favour, McMurchy advises to never wave someone through an uncontrolled intersection or four-way stop when they do not have the right of way, as it only causes unnecessary confusion.