Adopt these safety habits to decrease your chances of being involved in an automobile accident on your next road trip.
If you are someone who frequently travels, you may not think about road safety as much as you should. The truth is that you take a risk every time you drive, and when you do so for lengthy periods of time, there are even more severe dangers involved. The best way to avoid an accident is by adopting the following safety habits. If you adhere to them fully and still end up in a crash, you can always call a St. Louis auto accident lawyer to learn about your legal rights.
Check Your Car Before Leaving
If you have a long car ride ahead, you likely have some preparations to make before leaving. Part of that routine should be checking the critical aspects of vehicle maintenance, which are tire pressure, tire wear, and brakes. While experienced people can do these checks themselves, most of us need to see a mechanic. Once you get confirmation that your car is in good shape, you can set off on your journey with confidence.
Though many long drives are navigated alone, a significant portion is done with others. This is often the case for road trips in which family or friends take on the journey together. In these situations, do not let one person drive the entire time. This will cause fatigue in that driver and put everyone in danger. Instead, switch off and keep a fresh set of eyes behind the wheel at all times.
Know When to Use Cruise Control
One of your best tools for making a long drive comfortable is cruise control. You can set it to a certain speed, take your foot off the pedals, and get some reprieve. Unfortunately, cruise control is not appropriate at all times. When you are in heavy traffic or inclement weather, using this function will lower your reaction time and put you at risk. Your best bet is to only use it when weather conditions are optimal and there are few cars on the road.
Keep Your Seatbelt On
At some point in your long drive, you may feel the urge to take your seat belt off. This is a mistake. No matter how uncomfortable you feel with it on, you need to keep wearing it. If you do not, a relatively harmless accident could result in a severe injury.
Be Honest About Your Fatigue
On long drives, and especially ones that go through the night, your chances of becoming fatigued are high. When you do, you cannot try to “tough it out” and keep driving. Instead, switch drivers or stop at an area where you can rest. Even if this means staying at a hotel, you should do it. The cost of a room is much less than getting injured in a car accident.
Long drives can be dangerous. By following the tips on this list and adhering to general driving safety guidelines, you will make yourself and everyone around you that much safer.