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When you see a hazard ahead, you should use the mirrors. Why is this?

Because you'll need to accelerate out of danger

To assess how your actions will affect following traffic
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Because you'll need to brake sharply to a stop

To check what's happening on the road ahead

You should be constantly scanning the road for clues about what’s going to happen next. Check your mirrors regularly, particularly as soon as you spot a hazard. What’s happening behind may affect your response to hazards ahead.