Summer is the time for vacation, often involving long road trips. Before hitting the highway, you should familiarize yourself with summer driving safety tips to keep yourself, your passengers, and others safe.
Initial Check-Up and Planning
Before you leave, it’s best to bring your car to a mechanic for an inspection and regular maintenance. Review this vehicle safety checklist on the day of departure:
- Check your tires for adequate tread depth and the correct tire pressure. The driver’s door pillar should have a placard that lists the correct tire pressure for your car. To check the tread depth, insert a penny upside down. If you can see the top of President Lincoln’s head, replace your tires as soon as possible.
- Test your vehicle’s lights.
- Check oil, coolant, and windshield washer fluid levels.
- Inspect belts and hoses in your engine for any signs of cracks, tears, or blisters in the rubber.
- Check your air conditioner’s performance.
Safe Driving Tips You Can Use While on the Road
Keep these summer driving tips in mind to reduce the risk of a car accident:
- Check the traffic and weather forecasts to avoid congestion or severe weather.
- Leave extra time to reach your destination to avoid the temptation of speeding or driving recklessly to make up time for any delays.
- Follow posted speed limits.
- Avoid distractions, such as talking on the phone or texting while driving.
- Keep an eye out for motorcycles, bicyclists, and pedestrians.
- Maintain a safe distance from tractor-trailers and other large trucks.
- Prevent drowsy driving by taking breaks every few hours to stretch, drink water, and eat snacks. When traveling with other licensed drivers, take turns driving to get some rest.
- Never drink and drive. If you plan to consume alcohol while out, have a designated driver or make alternative transportation plans.
Keep Children Safe
Drivers should also familiarize themselves with safety tips for traveling with young children:
- Children under 13 should ride in the back seat.
- Ensure that you’ve correctly installed car seats or booster seats. Your child needs a seat appropriate for their age and size. Booster seats should place the shoulder strap of the seatbelt across a child’s chest.
- Never leave children unattended inside a vehicle.
- Remember to lock your car after getting out so children cannot sneak inside and trap themselves.
Take an Emergency Kit with You
Carry an emergency kit in your vehicle at all times. An emergency kit should include the following:
- Jumper cables
- Hazard triangles or road flares
- Portable batteries to recharge your phone
- Bottled water and non-perishable snacks
- A first-aid kit
Contact our West Virginia Car Accident Lawyer if You’ve Been Hurt in a Crash
Summer is a time for fun, but the season can turn tragic if a car accident derails your vacation plans. If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a car crash, get legal help to pursue compensation for your medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering. Contact Robinette Legal Group, PLLC, today for a free consultation with a West Virginia car accident lawyer.
Jeffery Robinette was admitted to practice law in 1991 and is licensed in all levels of state and federal trial courts in West Virginia. Mr. Robinette is also licensed in all state and federal appeals courts in West Virginia and the United States Supreme Court. As a National Board Certified Trial Attorney who has handled hundreds of motor vehicle, injury, and construction defect claims and a leading author on insurance claims settlement issues and difficulties in West Virginia, Jeff Robinette is uniquely qualified to represent your best interest.