Safe Holiday Road Ways
How to stay safe during the winter holiday season.
As we get closer to the holidays, the roads get more and more crowded as people get out for holiday shopping and travel to spend the season with their loved ones. That means an increase of danger on the roadways. Along with more people, the holidays bring other hazards including winter weather and drunk drivers.
With the increase of hazards, you may be thinking “well, how do I stay safe on the road this season?” Just follow these quick tips!
Dealing with the Crowds
It may seem like the population doubles around the holiday and that means more people on the roads. Staying alert and prepared for sudden actions is so important.
- Avoid distractions by putting your phone away while driving, avoiding eating while driving, and do your multi-tasking elsewhere.
- Maintain a buffer zone between you and the vehicles around you.
- Communicate your intention by using your blinker at least 100-200 feet prior to your maneuver.
- If you don’t feel comfortable driving in traffic, don’t! You can always take an Uber, carpool, or take public transportation.
- Be sure that your younger passengers have something to keep them entertained on longer rides to avoid the distraction of needy passengers.
Winter Weather on the Roads
The holiday mark the start of winter and freezing temperatures. We are expecting and a particularly wet and cold winter here in Georgia.
- Give your car a checkup to ensure that your tires have plenty of tread, check headlights, taillights, and break lights, and make sure your brake pads and rotors are in good shape. You may even want to take it in to be looked at by a professional to guarantee optimal safety.
- Keep a bundle of cold weather gear in your car just in case. Pack a kit with food, water, a flashlight, blankets, and an ice scraper. You can never be too safe, remember Snowmageddon Atlanta in 2014? The roads ways were closed for almost a week and thousands of people were stranded.
- Increase your following distance to at least 5 to 6 seconds. The longer stopping distance are necessary if the roads are slick.
- If it is snowing, stay home if you can! You may be an expert driver that is skilled in driving in winter weather, but that doesn’t mean that everyone around you is the same!
Staying Safe around Possible Drunk Drivers
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration there were 10,511 deaths from drunk driving accidents. The number 1 defense against drunk driving accidents is to not drink and drive, but we know we can’t ensure that there won’t be any intoxicated drivers on the roads, but there some ways to protect yourself if you think there may be a drunk driver on the road near you.
- If you believe you have spotted a drunk driver, call (via Bluetooth or a passenger) 911 immediately and report your location and the description of the vehicle.
- Remember seatbelts save lives! Properly buckling in can save your life if you do get hit by a drunk driver.
- Generously increase your following distance if the driver in front of you is driving erratically. Stay as far away as possible.
- Avoid driving at night if possible. Especially on major holiday like New Years. Unfortunately, it is fairly common for people to leave a holiday party after drinking and get behind the wheel.