The most wonderful time of the year is also the busiest time of the year, a whirlwind of holiday parties, shopping trips around town, and road trips to grandma’s house. With so much added volume on the highways and byways, we came up with a few easy tips to help you and your loved ones stay safe as you travel near and far this holiday season.
Don’t Drink and Drive
We know this one is obvious, but it still bears repeating, as the U.S. Department of Transportation reports that an average of 300 people die in alcohol-related car accidents each year during the week between Christmas and New Year’s. Thus, a few simple tips:
Designate a sober driver.
Plan to stay wherever you are drinking.
Practice defensive driving so you can respond quickly if you do see a drunk driver.
Stay off the roads between midnight and 3AM, when most drunk-driving accidents occur.
Don’t Text and Drive
Another obvious one, but we get it. You’ve been running holiday errands all day, and now you’re late to the office party and someone’s texting you to pick up a bag of ice on the way. But looking down at your phone, even just for a second, can distract you long enough to make a serious mistake. Put your phone into Do Not Disturb mode when driving, or better yet, tuck it away into a purse, messenger bag or compartment so it’s out of sight and out of reach while driving.
Wear Your Seatbelt
It’s amazing how distracting the holidays can be. Getting around town includes more quick stops and errands than usual, and it’s easy to forgo buckling up when you’re running to and fro. Don’t ignore that annoying seatbelt warning, just click it so you don’t get a ticket!
This is one of the easiest ways to stay safe and alert. Slow down when you’re running errands around town or heading to the next holiday party, even when you’re driving long-distance on the highway. You’ll have more time to respond and thus avoid potential accidents, as well as keep a safe cushion of space around your car. Being a few minutes late is better than not making it at all because of a minor fender bender or worse.
Keep an Emergency Kit in Your Car
You never know when a stall or bad weather will leave you stranded, so it’s better to be prepared just in case. Keep a lidded plastic bin in your trunk or cargo area, and fill it with the following:
Small amount of cash
Snacks (like protein or granola bars)
Extra windshield wiper fluid
If you get stranded in harsh weather, you’ll be glad you thought ahead.
Service Your Car
This is especially important if you’re taking a road trip. Get your oil changed, have your tires and brakes checked, and make sure everything is running in tip-top shape so you’re not stuck waiting on a tow-truck on the side of the highway. Again, a little preparation goes a long way.
Enjoy the Holidays!
Everyone at Fuicelli & Lee hopes that you enjoy a safe and happy holiday, filled with family and friends and all the delights of the season. Practicing these simple driving tips should help keep you and your loved ones safe as you travel near and far, but because accidents do happen, know that we are always here if you need us. /contact-us/