One of the best ways to create cherished memories with your family is to travel with them. As a parent, your responsibilities extend beyond the enjoyment and comfort of your family. Security and safety are just some of the things that are often overlooked in favor of the adventures you’re about to have. Here are some of the most important car safety tips that you need to keep in mind every time you go on a road trip.
Make Sure Your Car Is in Traveling Condition
Before any trip, always take your car to your local shop to have it checked. Your car needs to be in good working condition to avoid any accidents and inconveniences that could ruin your trip. Ensure that your brakes and tires are in good condition, and check your vehicle’s fluids and make sure that they’re within accepted levels. A lot of car breakdowns and accidents can be avoided with this simple checkup.
Prepare for Inclement Weather
It’s important to always take the possibility of inclement weather into account, especially when you consider the effects of climate change. About 21% of car accidents are caused by inclement weather. If you’re caught in a storm, it’s best to stop at a parking lot or hotel if you’re uncomfortable with driving through bad weather.
Always Bring Emergency Supplies
Since you’re going to be travelling to a place far from your comfort zone, it’s important to bring emergency supplies such as a portable cellphone charger, powerbank, jumper cables, blankets, extra clothes, jackets, flares, water, non-perishable food, and a first aid kit. These emergency supplies will drastically increase your chances of survival in the event that you get stranded in the middle of nowhere.
Get Plenty of Rest Before Driving
Fatigue is one of the biggest dangers drivers face during long trips. Extended periods of driving increase the risk of drowsy driving, which was found to have caused about 91,000 accidents in 2017. Fatigue impedes reaction time, decision making, and focus, all of which are necessary to avoid accidents. Studies have found that driving for 18 hours straight is similar to driving with a blood alcohol content of 0.05%, which is just 0.03% short of being in a state of intoxication.
Tie Everything Down
It’s important to ensure that everything in your car is secured in place. Even small objects can become projectiles at the moment of an impact. Remember that the kinetic force involved in a collision creates massive force. Even when you’re strapped to your seats during a collision, anything that isn’t strapped down can hit you or your passengers. A bit of foresight could save lives.
Finally, it should be noted that there are simply times when accidents happen despite our best efforts at avoiding them. Knowing how to prevent accidents is only half the battle. Knowing what to do after an accident is just as important. If you do find yourself in a car accident during your family road trip, it’s important that you focus on getting quality personal injury law advice once you’ve gotten everybody to safety.