Stay safe this December with your holiday driving

Published on

December 6, 2019

This is the time of year that we ask a lot of our vehicles, with trips to see family, friends, office parties, school events and more. The number of drivers on the road that are trying to get to their own events increases and distractions can become a challenge. The month of December in Northern California can provide difficult weather conditions, limited daylight, and drivers in unfamiliar areas. Here are six ways you can drive safely and smartly this month.

1. Plan Ahead
Before you start your trip, make sure your vehicle is in good shape for travel. This is especially important for winter driving conditions. Check the weather before heading out to ensure the roads are safe to drive on. And don’t forget to apply Rain-x and keep your wiper blades fresh. Keeping a windshield scraper handy in your vehicle is also a great idea!

2. Stay Fresh And Alert
Make sure you’re well-rested before a long drive. Driving requires all of your attention, and you can get tired after extended periods of driving.  Plan the trip so you share the driving and take regular breaks to avoid drowsy driving.

3. Watch Your Speed
Give yourself plenty of time and distance to react to the traffic around you. A recent study on vehicle speed in the winter time found that for every one percent increase in speed, a driver’s chance of an accident increases by two percent, the chance of serious injury increases by three percent, and the chance of a fatality increases by about four percent.

4. Drive Defensively
Increased holiday traffic and winter road conditions can be frustrating. Be on the lookout for aggressive drivers that you can avoid. Put the safety of everyone in your car first by letting impatient and aggressive drivers pass you or go through the intersection ahead of you so that you control the situation.

5. Don’t Drive Impaired
If you plan to drink, don’t plan to drive. Using a designated driver when you have a couple of holiday refreshments is always the safest choice, or you can choose a taxi or one of the many ride services like Uber or Lyft.

6. Avoid Distractions
Reading a text removes your eyes from the road for five seconds. At 55 mph, that’s enough time to travel the distance of an entire football field. Driving requires your full attention. If you have to read that text, find a safe place to stop before grabbing your phone. Do not become a statistic this December.

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