How to stay safe on long road trips

long distance driving

Road Safety is imperative, especially if you are going to be taking long trips! Taking to the long road can be dangerous if sufficient preparation and planning are neglected. As much as road trips should be a pleasant, fun experience – safety should be the number one priority.

Even before the trip, you need to prepare your body for the many hours you will be inside the car. This is even more important if you are the driver.

Rest

Make sure to get sufficient sleep before you leave, even if this means taking a day off work to rest up before the drive.    A tired driver is just as dangerous as a drunk one – some would say even more dangerous. A lack of sleep will impair your judgement on the road and put everyone in your vehicle, and in the other vehicles, at risk.

Inspection

Make sure that your vehicle is in an optimum condition to hit the road. Inflate the tyres, clean the windshield and windows, and check the breaks. Make sure that you have checked every part of the vehicle for roadworthiness before taking off. On a longer trip, petrol stations and workshops may be few and far between. Also make sure to have a full tank of fuel once you embark.

Buckle up

This may seem like a simple one, but buckling up can save your life. Car accidents are the number one cause of death, especially over the Easter weekend.

SafeWise explains that by wearing a seat belt, you can cut the risk of being injured or killed by 50%. This is definitely our number one road trip tip to keep everyone safe, so don’t put the car in gear until everyone is buckled up tight!

Research the trip

South African drivers often travel distances during Easter and the Festive Season from the inland provinces to the coast, varying anything from 500km to 1 500km. Long distance driving requires exceptional vigilance, and some experts on safe driving have suggested that a driver should avoid driving more than 10 hours in a day.

Arrive Alive advises that drivers should always do their research and planning on the road to the destination, as factors such as road works and detours could delay their expected time of arrival.

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