The holiday period (November 21 to January 2nd) is one of the busiest times of the year for travel. According to a recent study from AAA (American Automobile Association), most Americans will travel more than 50 miles from home to be with the ones they love. The report indicated driving is the most popular means of travel and more than 89% of travelers will be on the road.
With more vehicles on the road during the holidays, the odds of getting into an accident are greater. However, by following these safe driving tips from the American Red Cross you can keep your loved ones safe and enjoy your trip:
- Buckle up, slow down, don’t drive impaired.
- Be well rested and alert.
- Follow the rules of the road.
- Use caution in work zones.
- Give your full attention to the road. Avoid distractions such as cell phones.
- Observe speed limits – driving too fast or too slow can increase your chance of being in a collision.
- Make frequent stops. During long trips, rotate drivers. If you’re too tired to drive, stop and get some rest.
- Don’t follow another vehicle too closely.
- Clean your headlights, taillights, signal lights and windows to help you see, especially at night.
- Turn your headlights on as dusk approaches, or if you are using your windshield wipers due to inclement weather.
- Don’t overdrive your headlights.
- If you have car trouble, pull off the road as far as possible.
If winter weather threatens and you become stuck in the snow, these tips are for you:
- Stay with the car. Do not try to walk to safety.
- Tie a brightly colored cloth (preferably red) to the antenna for rescuers to see.
- Start the car and use the heater for about 10 minutes every hour. Keep the exhaust pipe clear so fumes won’t back up in the car.
- Leave the overhead light on when the engine is running to help rescuers see the vehicle.
- Keep one window away from the blowing wind slightly open to let in air.
- Carry an emergency preparedness kit in the trunk.
- Keep your car’s gas tank full for emergency use and to keep the fuel line from freezing.
From all of us at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center…Have a safe and wonderful holiday season!