Preparing For Your Summer Road Trip

More fatalities occur on Canadian roads during the summer months than at any other time of year, according to the Canada Safety Council. Whether you’re out for a day trip, heading to the cottage, or taking a cross-country holiday, put safety first when you set out on your travels.

Here are some helpful tips to help you have a safe trip this summer:

1. VEHICLE CHECKUP

This may seem obvious, but it is worth mentioning. The vehicle you plan to use for the trip must be in excellent condition. When was the last time you had an oil change? Does the windshield have any chips? Are the batteries, tires, and engine in good shape?

Get your vehicle in for a checkup before you hit the road.

2. WEATHER FORECAST

Driving in bad weather isn’t fun and when things get rough, you may be forced to cover half the distance you intended to travel each day.

Check the type of weather you’ll expect during your road trip. If severe weather is forecasted, consider rescheduling your travel dates. Nonetheless, some little rain shouldn’t stop you from having fun.

3. SAFETY GEAR

Safety should always be your number one priority, especially when it comes to traveling with your friends and family. Ensure you have essential items such as spare tires and a jack for minor emergencies.

For major emergencies, roadside assistance may take a long time to arrive, especially if you’re in a remote area. To be on the safe side, pack items such as a first-aid kit, jumper cables, a flashlight, extra water, and a blanket. Also, charge your cell phone fully or carry a solar charger – you will need it to keep in touch with others during the emergency.

4. PACK APPROPRIATELY

Too much luggage cramps your style when taking a road trip!

Water bottles and other small items should be put away. Don’t allow anything to roll around your feet inside your vehicle. Loose items near the driver can be a major safety hazard.

Additionally, avoid obscuring the rearview mirror and the blind spots on both sides of the vehicle. Poor packing makes it difficult to notice the cars around you.

5. USE A KID-FRIENDLY CAR

When traveling with children, you will need to go a step further to maintain travel safety. Apart from the general car safety rules, ensure that you get the right car seats for your kids and install them correctly. It’s also great to consider bringing more water and snacks when traveling with kids so that everyone can remain happy as you travel.

Conduct periodic checks with your passengers to see if a pit stop is needed along the way. That way, you can leave plenty of time for lane changes to exit the roadway safely.

6. GET ENOUGH REST

Sleep is a vital form of preparation for anyone who wants to take a road trip. Fatigue leads to poor driving and even caffeinated drinks can’t help you with this.

Go to bed early on the night before your trip. If you get tired while traveling, just pull over and take a little nap. If you have another driver, this would be the best time to switch. It’s better to arrive a little late than take an unnecessary risk.

Happy road tripping!

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