The summer months often experience an increase in the number of miles traveled and also an increase in the number of serious and fatal collisions that occur. The summer of 2023 has already witnessed a significant uptick in the number of road trips and vacations taken around the United States, which means a lot of traffic and collisions on interstates and highways.
Those planning a road trip to a family favorite amusement park or Grandma’s cottage need to be aware that their crash risk will be higher during the summer months. What steps can people take to reduce the possibility of a collision when they are on a road trip or family vacation this summer?
Check the vehicle before leaving
One of the simplest ways to prevent vehicle issues involves preemptive inspections before leaving one’s town or state. Checking the brakes, the tires and even the battery for wear and tear can help someone ensure that their vehicle is in ideal operating condition when they leave the area they know. Those who can rely on their vehicles will be better able to respond to changes in traffic that put them at risk.
Plan a route and have navigation assistance if possible
Knowing the route that one will travel ahead of time will substantially reduce the driver’s distraction at the wheel. Those looking for landmarks or scanning street names as they drive can’t fully monitor traffic conditions in the behavior of people near the road as they should. Ideally, a driver headed to unfamiliar areas will review their route ahead of time, use navigation software and have a friend or family member interact with that software instead of handling it directly themselves.
Have a plan for fatigue
Fatigue is also a concern when someone will be on the road for many hours, especially if they have already spent most of the day at the beach or riding roller coasters. Those that recognize the danger of fatigue might plan their vacations a bit differently. Whether they stay the night before driving home or break the driving into shifts so that no one has to stay awake to drive for hours, there are ways to minimize how much of a risk distraction and fatigue will cause on the road.
As a final closing note, being very careful to follow traffic laws and to give other vehicles, especially large commercial trucks, adequate space on the road may be key to someone’s safe arrival at their vacation destination or back home after a road trip when there is a lot of traffic.
Using the three safety tips above can decrease the likelihood of a motor vehicle collision when someone simply wants to take their family or friends on a trip.