Road trips are an incredible way to discover new places and create memories, but it is essential that you are fully prepared for any unanticipated obstacles along the way.
Pack an emergency car kit, including spare tires, jack, and lug wrench, jumper cables, and essential tools. Additionally, consider packing a CB radio for reliable communication in areas without cell coverage.
1. Be Prepared
Being prepared can alleviate much of the stress on a road trip. This means planning in advance and departing early to avoid rush hour traffic jams.
Keep a backup plan, such as physical maps, in the event that your GPS fails or gets misplaced! Finally, plan for frequent breaks to help the driver remain alert and prevent fatigue – whether at rest stops or detours to local points of interest and cafes.
2. Keep Your Eyes on the Road
Keep an eye on your passengers, avoid using your phone while driving and don’t attempt to change lanes without visual checking first.
Plan your route to include frequent stopping points so that you can adjust it according to how tired you feel throughout the day’s travels. Also ensure your tires are adequately inflated.
3. Stay Alert
Long road trips can lead to fatigue and drowsy driving is one of the leading causes of accidents. To ensure safe journeying, consume a meal rich in proteins before setting out and make sure any medications interfere with driving ability.
Listening to upbeat music or podcasts, chewing gum can also keep the brain active and improve circulation.
4. Keep Your Seatbelt Fastened
Seat belts remain an indispensable safety feature of modern vehicles, offering protection from being flung around in an accident and through its windshield. When worn correctly, seat belts prevent injury to those inside and prevent windshield shattering when an accident happens.
Shoulder straps should lie across your chest while lap belts should sit over your abdomen. Some adults may find it challenging to reach or pull on their seat belt, especially those short or with large breasts.
5. Don’t Go Over the Speed Limit
On a long road trip, it can be easy to become distracted and exceed the speed limit, placing yourself at risk of receiving an expensive ticket and potentially an accident. This should never happen.
Make it part of your routine to regularly check and adjust your speedometer within its recommended limit, using the three second rule as a guideline for how closely to follow cars ahead.
6. Don’t Drink and Drive
Driving under the influence is one of the primary causes of road trips accidents. To ensure your trip goes as smoothly as possible, make sure to plan and be well rested prior to hitting the road. If you find yourself feeling fatigued while travelling, pull over and take a power nap if necessary.
If you plan on drinking, be sure to arrange for a designated driver or use car-sharing services like Uber and Lyft as soon as possible – don’t take the chance! It isn’t worth risking an arrest!
7. Don’t Text and Drive
Even taking just a momentary distraction away from driving to look at your phone can have serious repercussions, according to studies. Texting while driving has been shown to reduce reaction times nearly as much as being legally drunk does.
Most messages don’t require immediate responses; therefore, you can wait to reply until it is safe. Simply make sure your phone is out of reach before beginning your trip.
8. Don’t Be Distracted
Any distraction while driving is potentially dangerous, including cell phones (even hands-free devices), texting back, responding to texts, checking battery statuses or accessing features of the vehicle.
Eating and grooming activities such as shaving and applying makeup are potential distractions behind the wheel, while daydreaming poses another risk. To reduce risk, power down or store devices before embarking on your trip.
9. Don’t Drive While Under the Influence
Under the influence of alcohol or other substances is illegal and can have deadly repercussions, including impaired judgement, attention span and reaction time to hazards on the road. It also impairs physical control of your car as well as mental capacity for decision making and reaction time to potential safety concerns.
Be mindful of other vehicles’ speeds and positioning to help identify if a driver may be impaired, and increase your following distance if this appears to be the case.
10. Don’t Drive While Tired
Road trips are an amazing way to have fun and discover, but they can also be risky if not properly prepared for.
Long car rides can leave us drowsy. To prevent this from happening, be sure to take regular breaks and switch drivers periodically.
These driving tips will ensure your journeys this summer remain safe. Enjoy your adventures safely!