Pack Up Your Car And Get Driving This Easter
With travel overseas and airline travel still restricted more and more South Australians are likely to be hitting the road this Easter. But no matter how experienced you are behind the wheel there are only so many things you can control when on a busy road. We’ve put together a list of the most common stresses and obstacles and how best to navigate them before you set off.
Here’s What You Can Control
If you are planning a trip which requires loading up the car and staying away from home it’s crucial to ensure that your car is up to the task. It’s important to make these checks before you set out.
- Tyre condition/pressure – Making sure your rubber is in tip top shape before you set of is crucial. With the increase in rain having tyres with deep tread can make a huge difference when in traffic. Being able to stop quickly and safely on congested roads is essential in avoiding accidents.
- Top up your fluids – Having plenty off (clean) oil, washer fluid, coolant, power steering fluid etc. could mean the difference between smooth motoring and being stuff on the side of the road as all the cars you worked hard to get passed whizz on by.
- Fatigue – Staying rested and sharing drive time makes for safer and less stressful travel. It also greatly reduces the likelihood of accidents late in the day/trip.
Here’s What You Can’t Control… And How Best To Deal With It
Even for the most skillful drivers on the road there are things that you just can’t control, but you can control how you’ll deal with them.
- Weather – this is super obvious, but we can’t control the weather (not yet anyway) and as such we can only be prepared for. Firstly; tyres need to be inflated to the right pressure, which for most cars will be 34-36 PSI. Equally as important is fresh, deep tread to maximise the contact in wet conditions. Secondly; Windscreen wipers – make sure they aren’t skipping or whining, this means they aren’t clearing water properly, and thus restricting you vision – not ideal on busy roads. It may be a good time to replace the wiper blades.
- Traffic conditions – if we could control this we’d have an open road and not a single other driver in our way. Bumper to bumper traffic can be infuriating, especially with bored passengers. To avoid boiling over make sure you keep the snacks light and healthy. This may sound odd, but high sugar or high caffeine snacks will spike the blood sugar and take the boring and make it MEGA boring. Keep the junk food to a minimum (at least until you reach your destination).
- Other Drivers – this is one that you probably wish you could control more than any other. All road users drive in slightly different ways, and at different speeds – this makes for very different experiences for everyone. Allowing extra time for travel and breaking frequently will not only help prevent fatigue, but also help you lower stress being behind the same cars for hours on end.
Other Helpful Hints
Whether you’re going to be on the road for 5 minutes or 5 hours there are things we can all do to help everything go more smoothly.
- Keeping yourself, your family, and your car hydrated. Make sure you have plenty of water available. It’ll help you avoid headaches and fatigue common when travelling.
- Giving clearance to long vehicles. Trailers and caravans don’t stop as quickly or maneuver as someone in just a car. Avoid tailgating, and be sure to overtake when you have a long bit of clear road where you can do it safely.
- Using the right lane on roads where speed limits are 80km/h or higher is only for those overtaking. A HUGE proportion of our repairs at this time of year are due to people travelling along in the right lane and not moving over after they have overtaken someone to their left. Remember – it’s not a “fast lane” it’s an overtaking lane. Make sure you move over once you’ve overtaken, otherwise you risk a high speed rear end accident. And regardless of whose fault it is it WILL ruin your holiday.
If You Have Been In An Accident We Are Still Here To Help You.
If you have been in an accident just take some photos, and give us a call. Just know that any scrape, dent, or bingle can be fixed in a jiffy by our wonderful team of panel beaters – we’re here to serve you – and your car.
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