A road trip is a time to create fond memories that will last a long time. However, driving, especially driving long distances, does come with its fair share of risks. To ensure your family’s safety no matter where your journey takes you, make yourself aware of these common risks families face while traveling together.
An SUV or minivan full of people can lead to many different conversations among the passengers. In a family with several kids, these conversations can sometimes lead to arguments that require parental involvement to resolve. Other times, someone in the middle row may have simply dropped something that rolled forward and would like it back before you reach the next rest stop.
Whatever the case, if you are driving, don’t allow yourself to get so caught up in the needs of your passengers and lose sight of their most important need: arriving at their destination safely. Keep your eyes on the road at all costs, and allow the front seat passenger to handle any sibling issues that arise.
One of the best parts of any vacation is the anticipation leading up to the vacation. The worst part of any vacation? Driving home. All the adrenaline, energy, and excitement are gone, and you’re likely tasked with getting everyone home at the last minute to resume normal activities the next day.
In many cases, you’ll be the only one awake in the car, leading to severe fatigue, and putting you and everyone you’re transporting at risk. Instead of pushing so hard to get home at the last minute, give yourself some extra travel time to ensure you’re well-rested and completely safe.
Sometimes families will happen to sell their junker vehicle at places like U Pull & Pay and get a new one right before heading on vacation, or they may get a rental. All the new comfort and entertainment features can make for a fun trip, but heading out for a long drive in a vehicle you’re not totally familiar with could be a hazard. Looking down while trying to figure out how to operate a particular feature could be all it takes to get in an accident.
Instead, purchase your vehicle at least a few weeks in advance, and try out the new features while on shorter drives in areas you’re familiar with. Then, when it comes time for your trip, you’ll be a pro without giving it a second thought.
Depending on where you travel, the speed limits, driving styles, and traffic patterns could be much different than what you’re used to. If you have a chance, consider the cities you’ll be driving through beforehand, and briefly research anything unusual about driving in that city or area.
You don’t have to be an expert, just know enough to be prepared for anything that would totally catch you off guard otherwise.
No matter where you travel, your number one concern should always be the safe operation of your vehicle. Driving safely is ultimately all about utilizing the right preparation. By knowing the roads, the vehicle, and planning for any distractions in advance, you’ll give yourself a great chance of having many safe miles in front of you.