With both experienced and inexperienced drivers on the road, there are several tips everyone can abide by in order to keep you, your loved ones and car safe at all times.
Before You Hit the Road:
Schedule car maintenance appointments with your mechanic regularly to ensure your car is working properly.
Plan a safe route and give yourself enough time to get to your destination so you don’t have to speed or drive recklessly.
Check the weather forecast for conditions that may cause road delays, and plan accordingly.
Keep an emergency kit in the trunk of your car, which includes a flashlight, jumper cables, road flares, a first aid kit, blanket, bottled water, road atlas and warm clothes.
While You’re Behind the Wheel:
Don’t drive when you’re tired.
Stay alert and don’t get distracted. Phone or text conversations, food, hair, makeup, scenery and accidents or broken-down cars on the side of the road are major causes of distracted-driving accidents, as well as adjusting dashboard controls and temperature settings.
Obey driving laws by wearing your seat belt, keeping a safe distance from surrounding cars and staying out of the passing lane, except to pass slower traffic.
Don’t drive if you have been drinking alcohol or taking drugs.
Be considerate of other drivers and avoid aggressive driving behaviors, such as following too closely and improperly using high beams.
Safely Parking Your Car:
Lock all doors and windows and take your keys with you.
Do not leave valuable items in your car or keep them out of plain sight.
Park in well-lit and public areas.
Avoid parking next to large vehicles or objects that a person can hide behind, if possible.
If Your Car Breaks Down:
Don’t get out of your car to repair or examine damage if you break down on a busy highway. Drive the car to a safe place if possible before getting out.
If you can’t drive the car, stay inside and call or wait for help.
Turn on your hazard lights and mark your presence with flares or triangles if it’s safe, to warn other drivers of your accident or breakdown.