Road Trip Safety Tips
With school just around the corner, families are hitting the road to make the most of the last few weeks of summer. However, a family road trip comes with safety hazards, so it is best to be prepared.
Ready for your road trip? Stay safe on the road and follow these distance driving safety tips from our personal injury attorneys.
Before Your Road Trip: Prepare Your Car
Before embarking on any road trip, make sure to prepare your car for travel. To avoid car troubles, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recommends that you do or check the following:
- Oil change
- Coolant levels
- Tire pressure
- Ensure that you have a spare tire
- Check brakes
- Inspect belts, caps, hoses, and filters
- Inspect lights, signals, wiper blades
- Top of windshield wiper fluid
You should check your car’s make and model for any safety recalls and get any related issues fixed before your trip. You can look this up on the NHTSA website. All you need is your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to look up any recalls.
Your Road Trip Travel Plan
Preparation is key to a successful road trip—and that means preparing yourself too. Tell family and friends where you are going and when you plan to be back. Also, check your cell phone’s range to ensure that you will have cell service in case of any emergencies during your trip.
Before your drive, familiarize yourself with the routes that you will be traveling and the weather forecast. Around here, driving in severe rain can cause accidents and travel delays.
Pack Safety Necessities
For your road trip, leave room in the car to pack the necessities including:
- A first-aid kit
- Extra water and snacks
- Jumper cables and flares
- Travel maps (even if you have GPS)
- Tool kit and cutting tool
- Waterproof matches
- Blankets and pillows
Get Plenty of Sleep Before Driving
Fatigue is one of the biggest dangers for people who are driving for long periods. Driving after being awake for 18 hours is like driving with a blood alcohol content BAC of 0.05%. Keep in mind: a BAC of 0.08% is considered legally intoxicated in all states.
Try to get between 7-9 hours of sleep each night and stop driving if you are tired.
Road Trip Tip: If you need to pull over, avoid pulling over onto the shoulder as other cars might not realize that you are stopped. If you must, put hazards out to alert others that a car is there.
Follow Child-Safety Seat Protocols
A road trip is fun for the whole family! Keeping your children safe while driving should always be a top priority. Before hitting the road, double-check that your child’s car seat is safe and secure—and that you are using the right car seat for your child’s current age, weight, and height.
Car seats should fit appropriately, meaning that you do not want a car seat that is too big or too small for your child. If you need to use two car seats, install both to make sure that they fit beside each other before strapping your children in for the trip.
On a Road Trip: Stay Alert When Traveling
It is easy to become lax about safety rules as you get more comfortable driving, but it goes without saying, all passengers need to be buckled in before you put the car in drive. Seat belts are one of the best ways to reduce injuries during an accident and can save your life.
You know that you shouldn’t text and drive, but it is also important to refrain from less obvious distractions such as eating while driving, changing music, fiddling with the GPS, etc.
- Always scan the road for hazards
- Be aware of aggressive drivers
- Avoid pulling over onto the side of the road—especially at night.
- Make sure you have plenty of gas between stops
- Take breaks and stretch
- If you feel tired, listen to music, or roll down the window
- Share driving responsibilities to help avoid fatigue or highway hypnosis
If you get in an accident while out on the road, call Mickey Keenan Law. We will help you get the settlement that you are entitled to— (813)-871-1300. At our Florida law firm, your family is our family.
Be Prepared for Inclement Weather
While being overly tired is a driver of accidents on road trips, unexpected storms can also lead to car crashes at any point in your trip. There’s nothing like an unexpected thunderstorm to cause major stress while out on the road…Plus, the Federal Highway Administration, estimates roughly 21% of car accidents each year happen in adverse weather conditions.
While we can’t predict the weather, checking the forecast for the area that you are traveling to can give you an idea of what to expect. Avoid rushing to get to your next stop, especially if weather conditions are bad. If you are driving on a wet road, it is recommended to reduce your speed by about one-third of the speed limit to avoid auto accidents.
Stay Safe on Your Road Trip
Ready to hit the road and explore Florida or the USA? We hope that these tips help you stay safe during your next road trip. Should the unthinkable occur and you’re involved in an accident, our attorneys at Mickey Keenan Law are here to help you get the settlement you deserve.
Whatever happens, you can trust that we will fight for you like family. Let our experienced personal injury attorneys take on some of the burden. We are proud to help make you and your family whole again. Call our Tampa FL, attorneys at Mickey Keenan Law today at 813-871-1300.