Thanksgiving is one of the most traveled holidays of the year. Millions of motorists will be taking to the roadways to be with their family and friends. Below are a few tips to help keep you and your family safe during this great occasion.
- The days are becoming shorter and in most parts of the country, we recently turned our clocks back one hour. Both scenarios bring us earlier darkness, which contributes to reduced visibility on the road and sometimes driving conditions that you may not immediately recognize. If at all possible, plan your trips during daylight hours.
- Check your tires to ensure that they are properly inflated and pay special attention to the tread. Weather and temperature changes can contribute to loss of air pressure and impact your steering and braking. It’s also a good idea to check your wipers and fluids. Also, keeping your preventive maintenance up to date will help to ensure that your journey will be safe and without interruption.
- Plan ahead for your destination, by knowing the highway exit name and number. Pay attention to how close you are approaching your exit and move to the right lane as needed. Give yourself enough time to safely make this maneuver, and avoid making unexpected lane changes when exiting.
- Fallen leaves on the roadway can become a driving hazard. Once they become wet, they can become slippery and make for unsafe driving conditions. While you are driving, keep a careful lookout for any areas on the road with leaves. Even if they are not wet, be mindful not to park atop a leaf pile to prevent a fire. Heat from your vehicle’s catalytic converter may be able to ignite a fire.
- The weather this time of year can come in many different forms. Rain, sleet and sometimes snowfall and hail can occur. If you find yourself driving on a road with excess water, slow down, by taking your foot off of the gas pedal. Avoid sudden brake and steering movements as they could cause you to hydroplane. If you feel unsure and cannot safely continue driving your vehicle, pull off to a safe area and wait until the precipitation has finished.