Whether you’re planning to take your family on a road trip or to the supermarket for a quick grocery run, road safety should always be a priority. Here are a few safety measures to help keep your loved ones safe while on the road.
Ensure your vehicle’s condition
A well-maintained car is vital to securing your family’s road safety. Have your vehicle regularly serviced by a professional so they can perform the necessary safety maintenance procedures such as:
- Inspecting your vehicle’s oil levels
- Checking the brakes’ condition
- Examining your tires
- Topping off essential fluids
- Assessing your vehicle’s lights
- Testing the battery
Buckle up properly
No matter how skilled you are as a driver, vehicular accidents are still possibilities, so everyone must be buckled up properly. Make sure your kids are in age-appropriate and federally-approved car seats. Your child’s age, weight, and developmental needs will dictate the type of car safety seat they require, so purchasing the right one is essential. If your child is big enough to use a booster seat, you can choose from different color booster seats made by reputable brands. If you already have an existing car seat, check if it’s properly installed and its expiration date, as most seats expire six years after their manufacture date.
Carry an emergency roadside kit
Since roadside emergencies can occur anytime, you must always have a well-stocked emergency kit in your vehicle. According to the National Safety Council, your supply kit should include jumper cables, a flashlight, a compass, reflective triangles, a properly inflated spare tire, a first aid kit, a fire extinguisher, duct tape, a tool kit, a car charger for your cell phone, and nonperishable high-energy food. You should also have protective gear according to your driving location’s weather, climate, and season.
Take driving breaks often
If you’re driving long-distance, taking frequent breaks is essential. Schedule breaks every two to three hours so you can stretch your legs and get some fresh air. Stopping often can also help your children burn off their unused energy, as boredom can cause them to distract or cause unnecessary commotion while you’re behind the wheel. If traveling with another adult, remember to take turns driving so that you’re both alert and well-rested.
While it is impossible to control everything on the road, driving proactively can significantly reduce the chances of vehicular accidents and roadside emergencies. Try to anticipate what other drivers might do, and pay attention to your surroundings. Keep your emotions in check and stay away from aggressive drivers. Eliminate all distractions and always adhere to traffic rules and regulations.
Get plenty of sleep
Fatigue can significantly influence your driving competency, so make it a point to get enough rest before a long journey. Aim to get at least six to eight hours of quality sleep and notify your family if you’re too tired to drive. Remember that your reaction time tends to be slower when you’re tired, causing you to make poor driving choices and compromise the safety of your loved ones.
Road safety goes beyond driving safely. Remember to follow these tips so you can drive confidently, no matter the circumstances.