Packing your bags, filling up the gas tank, booking hotels — there are endless to do’s when preparing for a summer road trip.
While all those prepartions are important, the most important to do is safety planning. Traveling long distances over the roads can carry potential dangers such as accident risks. However, there are various planning steps that can be taken to try to make your summer road trip as safe as possible.
Planning your route
Looking up the best route to your destination in advance and becoming familiar with the roads you will be taking can keep you from being caught off-guard while driving.
When planning your trip, make sure to factor in time for rest breaks and for drivers to get ample sleep on the nights before they will be taking to the wheel. This can help with preventing drowsy driving, which can be a major accident risk.
Preparing your car
The condition of a vehicle can affect how safe it is when out on the roads. Therefore, it can be wise to make sure the key systems in your car are in working order before your departure. Things you may want to have a mechanic look at include your vehicle’s belts, battery, fluid and tires.
If you have children, another key step in getting your car ready for a road trip is making sure you have the right car seats and ensuring that these seats are properly installed. This can provide your kids with important protections during your travels.
Securing your luggage
Whatever you pack, make sure it is properly secured or stowed away when you load it into your vehicle. This includes battening down, or keeping stowed low in seat wells, large or heavy objects. Unsecured objects can become dangerous projectiles in the event of a crash.
Being ready for the unexpected
Even when taking the best preventative measures, breakdowns, accidents or other negative events could still happen out of the roads during a trip. Therefore, it may be worthwhile to have an emergency kit ready and loaded in your car in case things go wrong. Important things to have in such a kit include:
- a flashlight
- tire-changing equipment
- jumper cables
- first-aid kit
- basic supplies (such as water and blankets)
You can be prepared for the unexpected by choosing to prepare for potential unforeseen situations before hitting the road.