With summer soon to draw to a close, it’s the time of year that everybody seems to want to squeeze in a little more vacation time. Don’t forget, though: Highways are rife with danger. While it’s important to prepare yourself for fun, it’s equally critical to make sure you’re prepared for anything that could happen, including an emergency situation.
- Create a Road Safety Emergency Kit
After actor Tracy Morgan was injured in a serious automobile accident in 2014, fans everywhere received a serious wakeup call to be prepared for the worst. In this vein, the American Red Cross recommends putting together a disaster supply kit in case of an emergency.
You’ll want to include jumper cables, a First Aid kit, a flashlight, fresh distilled water, and high protein snacks or meal replacement bars. Should your mobile phone have a technological malfunction, make sure your kit includes a card with emergency contact information, including names and phone numbers. Also, keep copies of important documents, including any medical relevant medical information. Finally, extra batteries for any device you use on the road can prove invaluable.
- Get Your Car Inspected First
What’s worse than a mechanical problem in your car? A mechanical problem 500 miles from home. Avoid this unfortunate situation by getting your car inspected by a qualified mechanic who can check all of its most important safety features, including brakes, fluid levels, battery, tire pressure, and any other potential maintenance issues.
- Sleep Well Before You Leave
Did you know that driving while sleep-deprived can be just as bad while driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol? According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drowsy driving contributes to 100,000 motor vehicle crashes every year. Driving requires your utmost attention, and fatigue makes it harder to focus. It also affects your judgment and memory, inhibiting your ability to perceive potential highway hazards.
- Watch the Weather Forecast
Weather has a huge impact on travel, whether you’re journeying by car, train, boat or plane. It’s not just rain and snow, either. The past few years have seen increasingly high temperatures worldwide – yet drivers are prone to forgetting that extreme heat can be as bad as extreme cold. Your car’s cooling system, tires, engine and transmission can be seriously affected by heat, and long hours of driving in the sun will strain the system.
Prepare yourself to deal with heat and moisture. Pack along sunglasses, sunscreen and a hat to shield your face. Don’t forget rain gear, because summer storms often come on quickly and without warning. Finally, bring plenty of insect repellant.
What to Do if There’s an Emergency
No matter how well you prepare yourself seemingly for any unforeseen situation, you could still find yourself in an emergency. Your vehicle is usually your best bet for emergency shelter, so stay close by until the problem can be resolved.