Are you heading out on a road trip soon?
If so, you probably have a lot on your mind in terms of what to pack, what route to take, and how to set your itinerary. In the midst of your planning, you also need to keep one very important thing in mind: your safety.
While road trips can be a lot of fun, it’s imperative you take the steps to ensure a safe journey for you and everyone in your group. .
So, what do you need to know? Check out this guide for the top road trip safety tips.
1. Know What to Do if You Get into an Accident
Every time you hit the road, there’s a chance that you could get in an accident, even if you drive safely and follow the road rules. If you do get into an accident, here’s what to do.
Immediately following the accident, you should safely pull over to the side of the road and call the police. Next, exchange insurance and personal information with the other driver. You will need to hire a lawyer later on, so it’s important to document as much as you can at the scene for future reference. Use your camera phone to capture details and images and request a copy of the police accident report from the attending officer.
If you are travelling out of state, take a few minutes to understand the rules outside of your home state. Different states have different laws in terms of how drivers are compensated based on fault, so get an understanding of these rules for the states you will be visiting before you hit the road.
2. Get Your Car Road Trip Ready
Before you embark on your journey, it’s also very important to check the mechanics on your car, to make sure everything is safe for travel.
Driving hundreds of miles can take a toll on your vehicle, so it’s important that your car is in tip-top shape before heading out. We recommend scheduling a maintenance appointment with a mechanic before you leave. Ask the mechanic to check your oil levels, tread levels, fluid levels, tire pressure, and wiper blades.
If it’s almost time to change your oil, make sure to do that before you leave. Ensure all of your fluids have been topped off and check your tires in case any are in need of replacement or minor repairs. These checks do not take much time, but can save you a lot of hassle and time on the road, not to mention give you the peace of mind you need for an enjoyable journey.
3. Get Some Rest
In addition to making sure that your car is in the right shape to hit the road, you also need to make sure that you are in good shape to hit the road.
Driver fatigue is a major safety hazard. In fact, there are 1,500 fatal car accidents each year in the United States because of drowsy drivers. So before you head out on the road, get a good night’s rest and do not leave if you feel unwell or too tired.
Even if you do not think you are tired, studies show that driving after being awake for 18 hours produces the same brain functionality as someone driving with a blood alcohol content of 0.05 percent, just under the legal driving limit of 0.08 percent.
If you’re feeling tired, it’s imperative you pull over to a rest stop or get a hotel for the night. While this may slow you down and cost you a bit more money, it’s simply not worth it to drive drowsy.
By following these safety tips, you’ll be better prepared for your next journey on the open road. Comment below if you have any questions or comments about road trip safety.