Summer vacations and additional driving actually increases your risk of an auto accident due to the additional miles the average person drives over the summer months and the amount of additional cars on the road.
Tips for Avoiding Summer Auto Accidents
Avoid Driving Distractions
- Common distractions include: other passengers, cellular phones, the radio/tape/CD player, eating while driving. Driving distractions take the driver’s attention off the road. Only a split-second of negligence is necessary to cause accident.
- Always Leave Yourself an Out. Look for space cushions in traffic where your safety doesn’t depend on another driver. Make frequent use of the mirrors on your car to monitor your spot in traffic at all times. Use the 2-second rule: the car in front of you should be passing a roadside obstacle at least two-seconds before you pass it. This allows you more time to react to any traffic problems ahead of you.
- Use your headlights. Having your headlights on is a good way to make yourself more visible to other cars and pedestrians when you are on the road.
- Be a defensive driver. Don’t assume that other drivers will see and respect your right of way all the time. Never presume that another driver will do something unless you are absolutely positive they will do so.
- Maintain average traffic speed. On the road there is nothing more dangerous than someone who is moving at a radically different speed. Cars moving too slow can be the cause of accidents, move along with the traffic to avoid problems. Speeding is a frequent factor in automobile accidents, don’t exceed speed limits even if the road appears empty.
- Respect the weather. Don’t push the car to unsafe speeds when there are weather conditions that impair driving. Summer storms can bring large amounts of rain, hail and wind. If necessary, pull over and let severe storms dissipate before continuing to your destination.
- Be aware that our reactions and driving skill deteriorate as we become tired. Especially on vacations and summer road trips over four hours, be sure to stop frequently at rest areas, stretch and stay well hydrated.
Drive safely to make your summer more fun!
1) Safe Driving Tips provided by Auto-Accident Resources and the U.S Department of Transportation