According to AAA, more than 93.6 million Americans are expected to take a holiday road trip. Whether you’re planning to drive across town to visit with family or take an extended road trip to your favorite vacation spot, you’ll want to arrive safely.
Here are some tips to help make your drive a smooth one:
Check the weather before you go
If the forecast looks iffy, wait out the storm if possible. If you must travel, make sure to buckle up, slow down and don’t drive impaired.
Prepare your car
It’s important to have a mechanic check the condition of your car before hitting the road. If your vehicle is not properly maintained, you could have issues such as hydroplaning, dead batteries and slipping brakes along the way.
Follow state laws
You know the rules! While it’s not always convenient to abide by the law, especially while driving in slow holiday traffic, it could be a matter of life and death. If you need a refresher:
- Don’t drink and drive
- Make sure every person in the car is properly buckled up
- Put the cell phone away – more than 18% of crashes are caused by distracted drivers according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- Use caution in work zones
Know what to do to avoid a crash
You’ve done all you can to prepare your car: you’ve checked the weather and you’re paying attention to the road. But unfortunately, you cannot control the actions of other drivers, so it is important to stay alert, keep a good distance between you and the driver in front of you, keep your speed down and have an escape route.
Keep valuables hidden
It’s a sad fact that theft rates spike this time of year. It’s important to keep valuables and gifts hidden in the trunk or covered storage area, especially when stopping for gas or a bathroom break. Don’t make yourself a target for a Grinch!