Throughout Florida, holiday celebrations are taking place everywhere. Many people travel to stay with friends and family during this time of year, so they can share the festive season with those they love. Unfortunately, taking road trips or simply driving to a friend's house for a party can be more risky during this time of year. This is because there are higher numbers of car crashes on weekends surrounding both Christmas and New Years as compared with other days of the year.
Busy holiday travel times mean more people driving to see loved ones, more traffic on the roads and a greater risk of encountering an unsafe driver. The holiday season and special events like New Years parties can also exacerbate the chances of encountering a motorist who is intoxicated. Drivers need to be aware of some of the added challenges they face, especially if they are going out on road trips themselves. If you are traveling in your car this holiday season, following safe driving tips could help keep you and other motorists safe.
Tips for a Safe Holiday Road Trip
Independent Traveler offers some advice on how motorists can enjoy a holiday road trip while doing everything they can to keep car crash risks to a minimum. Drivers going out on road trips should:
- Check weather reports for the entire trip before heading out. If you see inclement weather expected somewhere, consider detouring. Going out of your way to miss a bad storm could not just keep you safer, but could save you time in the long-run by preventing you from getting caught up in traffic delays due to weather.
- Get plenty of sleep and eat a good meal before you start driving. You don't want to be fatigued behind the wheel. While some drivers on road trips count on coffee to keep them awake, caffeine may not do enough to actually ensure you are alert. You could find your mind wandering even if you don't doze off, which can be almost as dangerous.
- Share driving if it is possible for you to do so. When you drive on your own for long periods of time, it becomes more difficult to concentrate. Splitting driving duties between people going along on the trip means no one needs to be focused the whole time.
- Avoid distractions. Stay off cell phones and minimize the use of electronic devices. If you must use a cell phone (which you shouldn't because it is dangerous) know state laws differ on allowable phone use so be sure to follow local rules.
- Learn and follow local traffic laws if you are heading out-of-state as different locations have different speed limits and other varying guidelines for traffic safety.
Motorists should enjoy their holiday road trip and have a great time when they arrive at their destination- but following safe driving tips to get to your final destination safely is key to having a healthy and happy holiday.