We are approaching one of the busiest travel times of the year with the likelihood of an increased number of vehicle collisions due in part to the driving a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, drugs, fatigue and bad weather conditions. What can you do to prevent collision, travel stress and situation that might make you become bad crush statistic?

With a bit of planning and by following my driving and resting tips, you can help eliminate the stress of typical holiday travel, enjoy your trip as planned, and celebrate healthy and happy alongside family and friends.

Safe Driving Tips:

  • Never drive a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, drugs or a deadly combination of alcohol and drugs; always designate a sober driver.
  • Make sure your vehicle is in top working condition (check your brakes, windshield wipers, anti-freeze, defroster, heater and lights).
  • Make sure your tires are in good condition and properly inflated (including the spare tire).
  • Always carry an emergency kit in your vehicle.
  • Before your trip get the latest weather report and check for current road conditions.
  • Make sure everybody in your vehicle is wearing a proper seat belt (that includes buckling children into properly installed child safety or booster seats).
  • Minimize distractions like cell phone (turn it off, let somebody else answer it or use silencing mode).
  • Never drive tired and don’t overextend yourself. No destination or eventĀ  is worth risking your life. Check safe resting tips in this blog.
  • Never use cruise control during very wet or snowy road conditions. Cruise control can cause skidding and loss of tire traction in winter and heavy rain conditions.
  • Stay alert when driving and constantly scan the road. Pay attention to brake lights in front of you.
  • Use headlights in rainy, foggy or overcast conditions and turn on your low beams in fog or snow.
  • If you have to drive during hard rain, increase the following distance between you and vehicle in front, because stopping distance can double in rain. Always try to keep your vehicle in the middle lane, because water tends to pool in outside lanes. Also, do not drive through running water that could be deeper than the bottom of your vehicle.
  • If it’s snowing hard, first slow down, then increase the following distance between you and the car in front. Stopping distances can triple in snow.

In the event you find yourself skidding or hydroplaning, remember the following rules:

1. Do not turn or brake suddenly. Take your foot off the gas until you slow enough to feel traction on the road again.
2. Turn your steering wheel in the direction of the skid and as you recover control, gently straighten the wheels.
3. If you need to brake, in a vehicle without anti-lock brakes, do so with light pumping action. If your vehicle is equipped with anti-lock brakes, you can use brakes normally, because the vehicle’s computer will mimic a pumping action.

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