Prevent Holiday Car Accidents

holiday car accidents

The AAA Auto Safety Foundation is urging motorists to prevent holiday car accidents by getting a vehicle inspection before heading out on that holiday road trip.

Millions of Floridians take road trips on three-day holiday weekends like Memorial Day, July 4th, and Labor Day. Unfortunately, thousands will run into car trouble. AAA anticipates rescuing nearly half a million of these drivers will face potential safety hazards due to breakdowns like flat tires and mechanical problems. Being stuck on the side of the highway is increasingly becoming a common cause of roadside holiday car accidents.

A recent AAA survey found that 52% of Floridians plan to get a professional vehicle inspection before their summer road trips. Almost a fifth (19%) will conduct their own inspection. However, 21% of Floridians say they will not get a vehicle inspection before hitting the road.

Mark Jenkins, AAA Public Relations Manager, says that a properly maintained vehicle is crucial to a safe and successful road trip. It is important for drivers to get their tires, battery, brakes, fluids, and other essentials checked before they leave for a trip. This could prevent a breakdown before it occurs and reduce holiday car accidents.

Tips to Avoid Holiday Car Accidents

If it’s safe to do so, pull over to the next exit or stopping point if you are having car trouble. If you need to stop immediately, drive as far up on the shoulder as possible to be further away from passing traffic.

Activate your hazard lights so other drivers see you and call for help via phone, website, or the AAA Mobile app. It is safest to stay with your vehicle; however, if you must leave, watch for a good time to exit and be aware of vehicles nearby. Wherever possible, face traffic when outside of your car.

Tips from AAA to Help You Avoid Car Trouble:

AAA recommends inspecting your tires at least once a month and before going on long trips. Test the tread depth and inflation of all four tires, as well as the spare if applicable. The average car battery usually lasts 3-5 years, so visually inspect it for signs of damage or corrosion.

Listen for grinding noises and feel for vibrations when braking – these may be indicators that your brakes need to be examined by an auto repair shop. Be sure to replace rubber wiper blades every 6-12 months and top off engine oil and other fluids accordingly, as listed in the owner’s manual.

Additionally, keep an emergency kit in your vehicle, which can include items like a flashlight and batteries, first-aid supplies, water, snacks for people and pets, booster cables, flares/reflectors, a poncho, tools/duct tape/gloves/shop rags or paper towels.

Safe Driving Habits Help Reduce Holiday Car Accidents

  • Maintain Your Speed – Data reveals that speeding is a factor in around one-third of all traffic fatalities. Remain within the posted speed limit and adapt to road conditions as necessary.
  • Focus – It’s critical to remain alert while driving. Taking your eyes off the highway for more than two seconds significantly increases the risk of a collision. Cell phones, food, drinks, and other passengers are potential distractions that can cause you to lose focus. Observe surrounding traffic and be ready to react to any unforeseen situations.
  • Get Some Rest – Drowsy drivers pose just as much of a threat as those who drive under the influence. Before traveling long distances, make sure you get plenty of sleep; likewise, take a break every 100 miles or two hours when on the open road. Be aware that if sleepiness sets in, pull over until you feel refreshed and alert once again.
  • Drive Sober – Any substance that alters judgment or impairs skills needed for safe driving should be avoided at all costs. Furthermore, move over when you pass peopled working or stopped at the side of the road; this allows them sufficient space between their vehicle and yours.

As Jenkins explained, AAA’s roadside technicians will put their lives on the line to assist hundreds of thousands of drivers who are experiencing car problems. When you see flashing lights, move over to help everyone get home safely for the holiday, whether it’s a first responder, a tow truck, or a disabled vehicle. Do what you can to prevent holiday car accidents.

The Orlando car accident attorneys at the Martinez Manglardi personal injury law firm urge everyone to drive safely. If you’ve been injured in a car crash, call 866-730-3508 for a free consultation. Convenient locations throughout Central Florida.

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