Holiday driving is not ideal for anyone. Between the rush hour traffic and the increased drunk driving, it can be a scary time to be on the road. Even so, that doesn’t mean you can skip dinner with your in laws. Instead check out some of these quick and easy safe driving tips.
1. Avoid distractions.
Yes, this means your cell phone. Do not text and drive. There are more cars on the road than ever during the holiday season, your text to friends and family can wait. It is important to remember that even just reading a single text message can be considered extremely dangerous. Reading one standard text at 55mph amounts to driving the length of an entire football field. It is not worth the risk.
2. Check weather conditions
This is a big one that some may forget while in the hustle and bustle of the holidays. Always check to see what is on the radar. Make sure your car is suited to handle the conditions. Follow the below tips to make sure you are at your best:
- FOG: make sure to turn on your fog lights, also referred to as low beam lights. Be careful not to think you are in the clear too fast. Fog will normally come in patches.
- ICE and SNOW: this weather also calls for low beam lights. Take extra precaution and drive slow. Make sure all snow is removed from windows previous to driving. Try not to break suddenly, this can cause you to loose control as the roads are prone to be more slippery. When turning or using breaks, do so gradually to avoid skidding.
- RAIN: take extra precaution by driving slower than normal. Leave more room in between you and the car in front of you. Make sure your windshield wipers are working properly.
3. Do not drive while impaired
This should come as an obvious but unfortunately not every one sees it this way. The holiday season has the largest increase in drunk driving accidents. During the holiday season 40% of all auto accidents include alcohol. Currently in the U.S. someone looses their life in a drunk driving accident every 52 minutes. Combine this with the fact that the average person that consumes alcohol will increase their intake by 25% between the time period of Thanksgiving to New Years.
These statistics aren’t meant to scare anyone, more to make people aware of the dangers that come with consuming alcohol. If you plan on having a drink, make sure you have a safe ride home either through a friend or a ride share app.
4. Check your coat
Lastly, it is important for people to remember to take off their large winter coats before buckling up. This can be easily over looked, especially if you are in a hurry or just really cold. Large coats can get in the way of a seat belt working properly. This is even move true for children still in car seats. A large puffy coat can make it difficult to harness small children properly. A loose harness, much like a loose seat belt, can be extremely dangerous in the event of a crash. Take the extra step of taking not only your large coat off but also any little ones in the car with you.
Overall we wish you all happy and safe holiday driving. Remember to buckle up and keep your eyes on the road. Don’t get distracted and definitely DO NOT drive while impaired. Remember if you are someone you know needs a refresh on their driving lessons or need to dismiss a ticket, you can do that right here at Comedy Defensive Driving. Happy Holiday Season.