By Lauren Fix, The Car Coach
The holidays are a popular time for travelers, and this year 76 percent of Americans are planning to travel by car. However, the wintery weather and extensive travel time can present specific safety hazards that you should be aware of before taking your trip. Here are five tips for safe holiday travels to consider while planning your trip.
A recent 3M survey showed 77 percent of drivers are concerned about driving in bad weather and 71 percent of 3M U.S. survey respondents are concerned about night visibility.
Tip #1 – What Makes the Roads Safer?
Many people may not know that 3M invented reflective sheeting and installed the first fully-reflective stop sign in 1939. Now, it manufactures advanced reflective materials for road markings and license plates to keep you visible and safe on the road. This makes roadways, and other vehicles more visible to drivers. 3M has been helping make the streets safer for over 80 years.
Tip #2 – Preparing Before You Hit the Road
- Check your tire pressure and the condition of your tread. Properly inflated and adequate tires can keep you safe on the road – especially in slick conditions.
- Eighty percent of driving decisions are based on visibility, seeing the road and other drivers, and is a top concern for drivers. Replace your wiper blades and carry extra washer fluid.
- Check your headlights, taillights, turn signals, and backup lights. If your headlights lenses are hazy, you can polish them to get a better view of the road.
Tip #3 – Plan Your Route in Advance
- Use your GPS to watch traffic and help you plan the best time to leave for your trip, avoiding the major rush hours. This will help you avoid road construction and accidents.
- Plan fuel stops and use apps to get the lowest prices.
Tip #4 – Always Be Prepared
- Carry an emergency kit and replenish any items you have used in the past. This includes preparing for colder temperatures that can impact your travel:
- First aid kit
- Drinking Water
- Reflective triangles (LED lights)
- Reflective vest in case you need to walk to get help (3M product)
- Duct tape (3M product) is a great temporary solution for a quick repair. Even if you aren’t mechanically minded, you can still patch up with duct tape until you can find a safer and more permanent solution while on the road
Tip #5 – Handling Bad Weather
- Keep your focus on the road and stay off your phone so that you can be aware of the other vehicles and drivers around you.
- Seventy-seven percent of the 3M survey respondents are concerned about driving in bad weather. If you find yourself driving in bad weather and visibility is an issue, be sure to focus and pay attention to road markings to keep your awareness. If you have no visibility, pull over in a safe area.
Watch the video review. We show you everything you need to know. If you have additional questions, put them in the comments below, and I’ll be happy to answer.
Lauren Fix, The Car Coach®, is a nationally recognized automotive expert, analyst, author, and television host. A trusted car expert, Lauren provides an insider’s perspective on a wide range of automotive topics and aspects, energy, industry, consumer news, and safety issues.
Lauren is the CEO of Automotive Aspects and the Editor-in-Chief of Car Coach Reports, a global automotive news outlet. She is an automotive contributor to national and local television news shows, including Fox News, Fox Business, CNN International, The Weather Channel, Inside Edition, Local Now News, Community Digital News, and more. Lauren also co-hosts a regular show on ABC.com with Paul Brian called “His Turn – Her Turn” and hosts regular radio segments on USA Radio – DayBreak.
Lauren is honored to be inducted into the Women’s Transportation Hall of Fame and a Board Member of the Buffalo Motorcar Museum, and Juror / President for the North American Car, Utility & Truck of the Year Awards.
Check her out on Twitter and Instagram @LaurenFix.