Right now is a fantastic time to get out and enjoy the warm weather and scenic views with a road trip – even if only for a day or two. Here are some safety tips for your next adventure:
Vehicle: Regardless of what type of vehicle you’ll be taking, there are some checks you should make before you hit the road. Make sure that your tires are properly inflated, brakes are fitted and that you have a full tank of gas. Also keep current copies of all essential paperwork (registration, proof of insurance, etc.) in your glove box.
Planning the route: Take a look at the route maps to find the best path for travel. Look for high traffic areas and consider alternate routes or less busy times of day to go through those areas.
Prepare properly: Defensive driving starts before you pull out of the garage. Go through a pre-trip checklist prior to leaving. Important tasks include locking the car doors, adjusting the mirrors and buckling your seat belt.
Attire: Wear comfortable clothes that allow you to move freely during the road trip. Check the weather forecast and dress appropriately, being sure to also wear or bring layers in case the weather is warmer or cooler than expected.
Emergencies: Think though possible emergencies (flat tire, getting locked out of your car, etc.) and make sure you are ready to handle them.
Stay focused: Your mind may be on your destination, but it’s important to stay “in the moment” when driving. Ensure your focus is on the road by choosing not to drive when you’re drowsy, emotional or impaired.
Be proactive behind the wheel: Look down the road, and try to spot the hazards. Does a driver need to change lanes? Attempt to move over. Is it starting to rain? Ease up your speed. Does the driver ahead keep slamming on the brakes? Maintain at least a three- to four-second gap between your two vehicles.
Avoid distractions: Besides your cell phone, there’s another gadget guilty of taking eyes off the road: a GPS. Be sure to program your GPS before you leave the driveway.
Follow Rules: Abide by the traffic rules and regulations during the road trip. Drive with a priority on protecting your family and those around you, including using your indicators while changing lanes.
Slow down: Follow the speed limit, and reduce your speed according to road conditions. This will also give your passengers time to enjoy the scenery. And if you enjoy looking out the window, consider driving in shifts.
Stay Alert: Even the safest drivers can get drowsy. Plan to break up your trip by rotating drivers periodically. That way, the person behind the wheel is fresh and alert, and the one in the passenger seat can help the driver stay focused.
The best road trips are ones that include memorable experiences, avoid problems along the way, and get you home safely. Follow these tips to help make sure your next road trip is one you will never forget!
We hope you enjoyed this post. If there is anything else we can do to help you feel free to call us at (805) 466-2446 (Atascadero) or (805) 239-8752 (Paso Robles). And be sure to stay connected with us on Facebook as well!