Simply put; car accidents take a heavy toll. Even a minor ping can cost you a bundle and be an utter inconvenience. Of course, on the other end of the scale, a major accident can be ruinous and completely life-altering. Take the following precautions to minimise your risk when heading on that road trip.
It’s a no-brainer that the faster your drive, the longer it takes you to slow down. A small decrease in your speed can greatly diminish your risk of crashing. Maintain a two-second gap from the car ahead and double this to four seconds when it’s raining, foggy or otherwise hazardous.
As important as it is to keep your driving in check, your car could be a potential liability too. Before you set off check your tyres (including your spare), make sure you’ve got a full tank of fuel, windscreen wash, oil, water, functioning break lights and that child seats are properly fitted. If you are hiring a car, familiarise yourself with it and it’s equipment before hitting the road.
However tempting it may be to have a tipple or two, it’s advisable to stay clear of any alcohol when getting behind the wheel. Not only does liquor affect your driving skill, readiness and behaviour, once it's been consumed the effects cannot be reversed. In NSW drink driving is a factor in about one in every five crashes where someone loses their life. What’s more, police will be out in force making Random Breath Tests over the silly season, so unless you want a fine, demerits points and a license suspension, stay away from the chardonnay!
Fatigue is one of the biggest dangers on our roads particularly for long-distance commuters. Driver fatigue has been likened to drink driving and fatigue-related crashes are twice as likely to be fatal. Remember; sleep is the only cure for tiredness. If you can, share driving responsibilities with someone else.
Road rage can be dangerous and stress provoking. Do your bit to maintain courtesy and respect the rights to safety for everyone on our roads. If you do encounter an aggressive driver avoid conflict. Remember to abide by the road rules when driving on any dual lanes keep left unless overtaking.
Internal distractions can pose danger to your driving. Whether it’s your kids or other vehicle occupants it’s important to mitigate commotions that compete with your ability to focus. Make sure you have plenty of games-on-the-go and treats to keep the small members of the family entertained. Ensure any furry members of your family are properly restrained and cared for and secure any loose objects. Check out more family friendly road trip hacks here.
There’s nothing worse that breaking down on your road trip. If you haven’t already invested in roadside assistance, now may be the time to reward yourself to prevent an unexpected pit-stop.
If you are travelling alone, be sure to switch your phone to silent. If you’re lucky enough to have passengers get them to text for you.
The far-reaching consequences of speed related accidents can be enormous. Not only are they devastating; speed related accidents cost the Australian economy around $27 billion dollars each year.
If you’re preparing for a road trip- remember to enjoy your journey and take your time getting to your destination. The key to safe travel is plenty of preparation. Before you hit the road; know your route and don’t rush. Plan for the unexpected, and take lots of rest stops to break up the monotony of motorway driving. A few basic safety tips can make all the difference when it comes to ensuring the safety of your friends and family.
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Although we cover a range of car calamities, some exclusions still apply to your cover.
What better way to explore all that vast terrain than by road!