Even though your chances of having an auto accident during the holidays is much higher than normal, holiday accidents are preventable to a large extent. The increase in holiday auto accidents is due to the fact that there are just more people out there driving–both short and long distances–as well as the fact that the holidays bring celebrations, and celebrations typically come with alcohol. Add the generally more inclement weather to the mix, and you have a holiday recipe for an auto accident. You can substantially increase your chances of getting where you are going without suffering an auto accident that ruins your holidays-and perhaps even changes your life-by following a few simple rules.
Top Auto Accident Prevention Tips
Most especially if you will be driving cross country, there are basic maintenance and vigilance tips you can implement which will substantially reduce your chances of an auto accident far from home.
1. Check the oil: Even if you are a few hundred miles away from your next scheduled oil change, get it done early.
2. Check the tread on your tires: Nothing puts a damper on holiday trips more than getting into an auto accident due to worn out tires. Check your tire pressure as correctly inflated tires improve handling, make tires more resistant to punctures to help you avoid an auto accident.
3. Slow down! Though it seems self-evident, you need every trick in your arsenal during the holidays. Drive defensively; drive the posted speed limit, pay attention to the road and you will arrive at your destination whole and happy.
4. Plan ahead: Allow extra time for the heavy traffic immediately before and after Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.
5. Plan to stop: Although you and your family might be excited to get to destination as soon as possible, plan to make stops along the way. Getting out of the car for just a few minutes will help you stretch your legs and even give you time to grab a coffee to stay fully awake while driving. Switch drivers if necessary to avoid an auto accident.
6. Avoid distracted driving: Distracted driving had become the main cause of auto accidents in the US and many states have already passed laws punishing this behavior. Avoid texting, playing with your GPS, adjusting the radio or talking on your cell phone while driving and you will reduce the chances of having an auto accident.
7. Prepare a safety kit: Pack a safe road trip kit with essential items such as a cell phone, flashlights, ice scrapers, blankets, jumper cables and a first aid kit, drinking water and snacks.
8. Designate a driver: Since there is drinking involved during the holidays, avoid getting into an auto accident by having a designated driver.
9. Buckle up: Always use seat belts and car safety seats for your children.
They will protect you and your family in case of an auto accident.
Remember that during the holidays many drivers are worried, hurried or distracted, making them less careful, and demanding that you be more vigilant than normal to avoid an auto accident that can leave you with less-than-festive memories of your holiday.
CEO, Brightgeist Media
Accident Lawyer from NY, USA