Are you planning on hitting the roads this holiday season? Thanksgiving is a popular driving holiday. Last year, more than 46 million Americans hit the roads for Thanksgiving. While gas prices remain low, more travelers choose to drive to their holiday destinations. The roads are inevitably more dangerous, due to the volume of vehicles on the road.
When Should I Drive and for How Long?
Plan to drive in the morning when you and other drivers are alert and there is less traffic. If you are driving a long distance, make sure you budget time in your schedule for breaks. If you’re traveling with another passenger, let them drive a bit to allow you some time to rest. Drowsy driving is a common cause of traffic accidents and you may not realize it, but the longer distance you drive the greater your risk for becoming tired or being involved in an accident. Schedule a break for every two to three hours of drive time.
Prepare the Vehicle
Before you pack up your vehicle with your belongings, take time to have it evaluated by a trustworthy auto repair shop. Ask your car care service adviser to perform a safety inspection and inspect any of your concerns. It is a good idea to have your oil changed, tires filled to the proper PSI, windshield wipers changed, and fluids topped off before hitting the road. Don’t forget to make sure your spare tire is filled before you leave!
Take time before your trip to reduce any distractions that may come up during your drive. If you have children in the back seat, pack and neatly organize toys, games, activities, blankets or pillows that you can access easily during your trip. Make sure your luggage is packed in nicely, so you can see clearly through the windows. If you can’t fit everything neatly, consider purchasing an auto luggage rack for the top of the car or on the hitch.
Try to avoid eating while driving, unless a fellow passenger can help. Finally, never text and drive and avoid other behaviors that might cause you to be distracted including eating, drinking, changing the radio station, adjusting a GPS, etc.
Take the scenic route! Not only is it often less congested, but it is more comfortable for your eyes than staring a straight highway. Remember to always buckle up and avoid hasty driving behaviors including aggressive accelerating and braking; lane-switching and speeding. Speeding reduces your reaction time and may cause you to be involved in an accident.
Follow these tips for a safe and happy Thanksgiving journey! If you have any questions regarding road trip safety, talk to your local Rad Air service manager!