Posted on July 2nd, 2015 by Zane Cagle
Many families across the Midwest plan weekend or week long trips via the road. Summer holiday weekends also have increased numbers of motor vehicle accidents so preparing for your trip and safety are crucial first steps in a successful family road trip.
You’re ready for the road trip, but have you really prepared?
Get your Car Ready!
Have you made sure your car is road trip ready? Meaning have you had the fluids checked in your car, maintenance of your car including examination of your hoses and tires? You don’t want to wait for a light to come on or a rattle under the hood when you are on the highway many miles from home. Run your car by a local car service and make sure your vehicle is ready for the miles.
Carry a Disaster Kit
We generally think of winter weather kids, but you definitely need a survival kid for your summer travel including such items as water, non-perishable food, flashlight, first aid kid, multi-purpose tool, cell phone, emergency contact numbers and pertinent medial documentation for any family member with health conditions—See what you should include in a Disaster Kit. (American Red Cross)
Are You Taking Your Pet(s)?
There are particular things you should consider before taking Fido or Fee-Fee with you. Considerations of Preparing to Travel with Your Pet. Long hours in a moving vehicle can be rough on animals. You have to consider the age, size, temperament of your pet before taking them on long trips. Some pets are miserable if traveling long distances which can make your road trip miserable as well. If you do decide to take your pet, you have to pack as you would for any other family member.
Make Frequent stops During Long Trips
Divide up the driving if possible especially if you are planning long-hours of driving which you usually are if you are road tripping. If you are drowsy, pull over and rest and walk around. Hydrating is crucial while you are traveling.
Keep up with News and Weather Alerts for the Latest Road Conditions
Traveling through other states, you need to seek out appropriate weather news. The American Red Cross has a free emergency app. As well, download our car accident app where you can store important information and have a checklist including geographically specific contact information for medical assistance, tow service and cab service. Injury Attorney is a free app from The Cagle Law Firm.
Give Your Full Attention to the Road
Avoid distracted driving such as cell phone use. If your car has navigation technology supplying directions, program before you leave or during rest stops. Or if you are getting directions via your smart phone, be sure you are using hands-free and listening rather than trying to manipulate it. If you are using actual paper maps, then you need to pull over or have a co-pilot to verbally give you directions………….like my parents did in the old days.
Summer Holiday Weekends Have Increased Crash Statistics
As more people are traveling on the roadways in the summer months, especially during holiday weekends, the number of car crashes on the roadways generally increases. The number one cause of car accidents is distracted driving which includes any number of behaviors other than full concentration on the roadway. Alcohol is the other leading cause especially around holiday travel. You can only be responsible for your driving and behavior. Car crashes are not something we plan. In fact, merely planning your actions in case one occurs almost seems like jinxing yourself!
What we mean by preparing is “Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst”. You should know what you will do if you are in a minor fender bender and what you should if you are not in your home state. Having a list of resources or an phone application “just in case” will reduce some of the stress of an unexpected incident. As well, safe driving and awareness is the best prevention. If you are in a motor vehicle crash, you may need legal representation. If you or a family member is injured, you will need legal assistance. If your accident occurs in Missouri or Illinois, we can help. If you have an accident in another state, we can usually connect you to another great auto accident attorney.
Our attorneys offer free, confidential consultations seven days a week, locally 314-276-1681 and toll free 1-800-685-3302.