Summer is the season for sunny getaways. Every summer, people take to the road with friends and family. Before you pack up the car and head out, here are some safety tips from Davis & Gelshenen to make sure your road trip goes along without a hitch:
1. Pack Light
SUV’s and minivans have a tendency to be top heavy. While it may be tempting to strap some more gear to the top of your SUV, remember that added weight on top increases your vehicle’s chances of rolling over. No matter what kind of vehicle you own, packing excessive weight to the rear or top of the vehicle impairs the steering and changes your stopping distance ability.
When loading up your car, make sure that your rear window visibility is not impaired. The driver’s ability to see out all windows is crucial to vehicle safety. This safety step also prevents cargo from falling onto passengers in the event of a sudden stop or accident.
2. Vehicle Maintenance
Making sure that your vehicle is ready for the road is an important step in making sure you make it to your destination safely. Don’t get on the road without making sure that your maintenance is up to date.
This includes checking your car battery, brake pads, oil and coolant. Consult with your local automotive shop to clarify that your tires are in good condition and don’t leave home without a tire gauge, jack, and lug wrench in your vehicle.
3. Child Safety
See our earlier post about Child Safety Seating to get comprehensive and up to date information on making sure kids are safe on your trip.
4. Driver Safety
Distracted driving has become a hot issue with the expansion of cell phone technology. Make sure that the driver on your Road Trip is not distracted with text messaging, phone conversations, and other portable electronic devices such as GPS, laptops, and video screens.
Passengers should take over the use of these gadgets. If you are driving solo, pull over to the side of the road if it is imperative you use the device.
If neither of these are an option, make sure to use bluetooth enabled headsets to minimize hand-held electronic distraction.
5. Staying Alert
Driver fatigue is most commonly encountered on long road trips. Fatigue can cause delayed reaction time, veering of your vehicle, and misjudging of traffic signals and situations.
Make sure to follow these helpful tips to prevent driver fatigue:
- Schedule regular breaks throughout your trip. Try to take breaks every two hours on the road.
- Don’t work a full day before taking your road trip.
- Don’t drink alcohol the night before driving.
- Share driving responsibilities.
- Avoid driving during regular sleeping hours.
Following these simple steps will ensure you reach your destination safely. Not having to worry about breakdowns or accidents will make your summer road trip exciting, fun, and stress free Taking some time out for precautions is the best way to protect yourself and your family this summer.