As we enter the holiday season it is good to be reminded of the importance of safe driving practices.
Stay alert when driving during the holidays.
During the holidays, it is extremely important to stay alert as you operate your vehicle. Holidays pose some extra concerns which require you to stay on your guard and observe extra safety precautions and remain vigilant where matters of personal driving safety are concerned.
If you are attending parties and social gathering be sure to plan ahead to make sure you arrive home safely. Avoid alcohol use if you are planning to drive and beware of riding with drivers who have used alcohol. Remember that seat belts save lives so always buckle up.
Remain aware of your surroundings while you are practicing holiday driving safety.
Have you ever “tuned out” while driving to or from work and found that you could not really remember much of your trip? It is easy to become complacent and miss facts which may signal trouble or danger up ahead while you are on the road. Be sure that you carefully observe all posted warning signs and signals. It is quite common for busy highways like the 401 to come to a complete stop so always try to observe what’s happening well up ahead so that you have lots of time to react to accidents or traffic jams.
Don’t take unnecessary risks for any reason. Be sure to allow yourself adequate travel time to avoid the need to rush. Having to rush generally involves speeding, which is the opposite of following safe driving precautions. Always allow more travel time than is required. This is especially true when the roads are wet or snow covered.
Pay attention when you find yourself in a compromising situation when your personal security or safety may be at risk.
A compromising situation may be anything which prevents safe driving from taking place. Examples of these are: having too much to drink or consuming mood altering drugs; having a medical condition such as diabetes or a seizure disorder and failing to treat it to prevent a blackout or seizure; texting while driving or engaging in other distracting behavior which diverts your behavior away from paying complete attention to driving. Another compromising situation may arise if your “designated driver” becomes unable to drive safely. Always have some sort of alternative transportation plan in the wings in the event that your designated driver is unable to drive. Having a friend to call or family members nearby to call on makes this suggestion possible. Absent these alternatives, always be ready to call a cab or take available transportation if available. Don’t trust your life or safety to an impaired driver.
Devise individual safety behavior.
Discover alternative ways that you personally can make your holiday driving experience safer. Take a brisk walk for a quick pick-me-up in the event that you are sleepy when it is time to drive. Program your mp3 player with fast music that screams “awake” or carry CD’s or tapes of similar music to keep your attention. Sing along if necessary! Drive with your windows down for fresh air. Drink some coffee or even water for the added oxygen it will add to your brain. Offer any of these devices to your designated driver to keep them awake if needed!
At Rastin & Associates, we wish all of our blog readers a safe and happy holiday season!