The summer months are the perfect time to take a road trip, but the combination of long days and hot weather can make for less than ideal driving conditions.
Most construction projects take place in the summer, so drivers are more likely to encounter roadworks and traffic jams which contribute to irritability and erratic driving on the part of impatient drivers. Routes to popular tourist destinations can get blocked with increased traffic flow and leaving engines on in stationary traffic can put stress on engines, causing breakdowns and accidents.
There are higher numbers of recreational vehicles, such as caravans and motorbikes, on the roads travelling at varying speeds and in a variety of road positions. In order to minimise the risk of incidents or accidents this summer, there are a few things you can do to prepare yourself for the warmer weather ahead, including:
Leave yourself time
One of the key causes of accidents over the summer is driver frustration causing aggressive driving, and this often happens when people are stressed about reaching their destination on time. Planes, ferries, and ferries don’t wait so when you’re trying to keep to a tight schedule you need to ensure you have plenty of time to spare.
Top up your washer bottle
From bugs and beasties to dust and dirt, the summer can be tough on your windscreen so it’s important to make sure you have enough washer fluid. Hot weather can speed up the rate at which the fluid evaporates and you’re less likely to encounter a handy rainstorm to wash your windscreen for you.
Check your tyres
High temperatures can lead to a rapid expansion of the air inside them, particularly when travelling at high speeds over long distances, and this can lead to blowouts. This can be disastrous at high speeds, so it’s important to check your tyres to ensure that they are well maintained and able to withstand summer driving.
It’s a good time to check the tread to ensure that you will have good traction on the warmer road surfaces and ensure that they are inflated to the correct pressure. Purchasing your tyres from top quality bands such as Pirelli is one of the most effective ways to keep yourself safe and it’s much better to pre-empt any problems by changing them before they affect your car’s performance or even cause an accident.
Re-gas your air conditioning
Getting hot and bothered can contribute to making driving mistakes, so being able to control the temperature while you drive is one of the best ways to keep a cool head. Overheating can also be bad for your health and a health emergency when you are behind the wheel could lead to an accident, so make sure you do whatever you can to keep your air conditioning working effectively.
Your car, your rules
Road trips can be fun, but a car full of excited passengers can be a noisy distraction that makes it hard to concentrate on the road. This can be particularly dangerous when driving on unfamiliar roads and looking out for landmarks, so make sure you have ground rules with your passengers to help you stay focused.
Even if you’re only going away for the weekend, you can end up taking a lot of stuff away with you, from specialist sports equipment to formal wear and hatboxes. It’s important to prepare your car and pack wisely so that in the event of an emergency stop you don’t have loose items flying around inside your car.
Use bungee cords to secure items that might otherwise become dangerous projectiles and make sure everything is secure before you set off. There are so many great places to visit by car this summer, from popular tourist spots to lesser-known attractions, and nobody wants to spend their holiday dealing with car troubles. Stay safe on the road with these simple tips and enjoy your holiday.