Staying safe on the road

Everyone seems hyped up for the holidays, hurrying to wrap up their shopping and head on to parties and get-togethers. This holiday season, chances are, you will be spending much of your time traveling.  Since streets will be a lot busier (and in some places, raining, snowing or covered with ice and frost), it’s a time that calls for a driver to be extra vigilant on the road. Here are some tips to stay safe on the road:

Make a safe driving plan

Leave enough time for you to take stops for food, rest breaks, phone calls or other business. Also, before putting the car in gear,  adjust mirrors, seats and climate controls.

Don’t drink and drive

Driving under the influence is a problem all year round, but reports reveal that every December, there’s a spike in road fatalities in the United States between Thanksgiving and New Year. So, if you plan to indulge in a drinking spree, common sense says: Don’t drive! You can stay the night. If you insist of going home, just take a cab, order a ride via an app,  or designate a driver who’ll take you home.

Drive defensively

Be aware of what other drivers around you are doing, and expect the unexpected. Always assume that other motorists can do something that might cause accidents, and be prepared to avoid them. Road safety experts say drivers must maintain a 2-second cushion between you and the car in front of you. If the weather is bad, make it four seconds.

Watch out for emergency vehicles

In an emergency situation, every second counts. The moment you hear a siren, be sure to pull off to the side of the road to allow the, police car, ambulance, or fire truck to pass.

Carry an emergency kit

A good driver keeps an emergency kit should that comes in handy if ever the car is stranded on the side of the road or involved in a vehicle accident.  Your kit should include bandage strips, hand sanitizer, antiseptic, antibacterial ointment, bug spray, aspirin (or similar), cotton balls, gauze pads, tweezers, a bandana that can be used as a tourniquet or sling, small fire extinguisher, road flares, jumper cables, rain ponchos, flashlight and extra batteries, rags, duct tape, scent-free baby wipes, and a multi-purpose tool.

Pull off the road if you feel tired

Driving while feeling sleepy is a deadly mix. Do not ever attempt to drive when you feel like just shutting your eye for a good rest.  Pull off the road and stop for a break and have a short rest. For long drives, anticipate being sleepy at a given time. Given that, you can bring someone who is licensed driver whom you could take turns with  in driving.

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