DRIVING SAFETY TIPS & RULES
There’s always a safety risk when driving, but there are a lot of things you can do to reduce those risks.
Before you leave:
- Stow any items that could become a projectile: stuff on the dashboard or a parcel on the rear shelf can fly around the vehicle during sudden stops or turns
- Secure cell phones and other electronics so they don’t end up underfoot when you drive
- Make sure beverage containers are snug in their cup-holders
When you’re ready to get underway, check your foot well for obstructions, check your mirrors, adjust your seat, and fasten your seatbelt – don’t drive off until your passengers have done the same.
It goes without saying that you should not drive if you are impaired by alcohol, drugs or medication. What you may not know is that distracted driving is now the biggest cause of accidents.
Driving distractions include:
- Applying make-up or shaving
- Emotionally charged conversations
- Texting and reading emails
- Talking on the phone
- Watching videos
- Anything else that takes your eyes or mind off the road – including hands-free phone, text, internet and email use
If you are drowsy, pull over and rest or get out and move around until you are alert enough to drive again.
We care about your driving safety, and it’s important to remember that proper car care and driver safety will provide you and yours with an extra layer of protection.
Before taking the road
Whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure, a motor trip is more enjoyable and stress-free if you are properly prepared. Here are some travel tips to smooth your way.
Vehicle Readiness – A Quick Check List:
- Tire tread: If your tires are worn enough to hurt your ability to start, stop and steer in the weather and road conditions you expect to encounter have them replaced.
- Tire Pressure: Check that your tires are inflated to the correct pressure. That includes your spare tire. Make sure you have a jack and tire iron in the vehicle.
- Brake Check: Have your brakes serviced if they are squealing, grinding, chattering or if your brake pedal is spongy or overly hard.
- Fluids: Check that all of your fluids are topped off.
- Routine Maintenance: If you have any maintenance services like an oil change that is overdue or would come due on your trip, take care of them before you go – many will help you get better fuel economy.
- Visibility: Clean your windows inside and out, replace worn wiper blades, take extra wiper fluid for a long trip, clean your headlights and replace any dim or burned out light bulbs.
- Professional Check: Ask your service if they will give your vehicle a trip inspection. Avoiding a breakdown on a trip will be well worth the cost of the inspection.
- Plan your route, noting the locations of needed services along your route.
- Tell someone about your travel plans, your route and timetable. Arrange for times to check-in so that help can be summoned if something goes wrong.
- Designate emergency contacts in your cell phone by adding “ICE” to the contacts name (ICE Husband, ICE Doctor, etc.). ICE stands for “in case of emergency” and allows emergency personnel to know who to contact if something should happen to you.
- Take emergency supplies appropriate to where you are traveling and the possible weather conditions and temperatures. Food, water, cash, and a light source are the basics. Add clothing, blankets and shelter items as appropriate for the trip.
- Bring along some basic tools in case you need to make a temporary roadside repair. An extra quart of oil or other fluids will come in handy if you run low on your trip.