Summer is here, and we’re ready for some summer road trips. Because everyone is feeling the same way, it means that traffic will be up, and this translates to an increase in dangerous car accidents. Fortunately, however, there are some things that you can do to help you stay safe out there, and if another driver’s negligence does cause you to be injured in a car accident this summer, reach out to an experienced South Carolina car accident attorney.
Don’t Be a Negligent Driver
When you head out on the road this summer, safety should always be your primary concern. One method of getting this done is by giving the most common forms of driver negligence a hard pass, including all of the following:
- Impairment – You know how dangerous drunk driving is, so make it your policy never to engage.
- Distraction – Texting is the most dangerous and prevalent form of distraction out there. That text can wait until you’re off the road.
- Excess speed – Speed kills, and this knowledge should be enough to dissuade you from hitting the gas.
- Exhaustion – Driving drowsy is likely far more dangerous than you realize. When you head out on that summer road trip, make sure that you have a good night’s sleep behind you.
- Aggression – Driving is no time to express your aggression.
Don’t engage in driver negligence, and be on the lookout for dangerously negligent drivers in your midst.
Always Be Prepared
When you hit the open road this summer, take it upon yourself to be well prepared for whatever may come your way.
Pack for an Emergency
In addition to packing your swimsuit and goggles, it’s important to pack an emergency roadside kit just in case an emergency should befall you on the road. Consider all of the following just-in-case items:
- A powerful flashlight with additional batteries
- A spare tire (brush up on changing a tire if it’s been a while)
- A portable tool kit
- Jumper cables
- Hazard triangles or road flares
- A cell phone charger
- Water to drink and water for your car
- High-energy snack items
- A first aid kit
Before You Head Out
Before you head out on that summer road trip, it’s important to make sure that your car is roadworthy by checking all of the following for any signs that you may need service:
- Check the air pressure in all four of your tires and the spare.
- Ensure that your car maintenance is up to date, including having the oil changed, your tires rotated, and your brake pads checked.
- Give your wipers a swish to ensure they are working properly and also check the level of your wiper fluid.
- Inspect your car’s battery and battery cables.
- Have someone help you ensure that your vehicle’s headlights, taillights, high beams, and blinkers are all working appropriately.
Make Special Arrangements for the Kids
Because road trips are more fun with kids in tow, it is important to do some extra planning to help ensure that they are kept safe (and entertained) throughout. As such, keep all of the following in mind:
- Ensure that each of your children is safely secured in a car seat that is appropriate for their age and size (in the back seat whenever possible).
- Pack a cooler full of water, juices, and healthy snacks that your children enjoy.
- Stop frequently so everyone in the vehicle can get out, stretch, and reinvigorate.
- Pack car-appropriate activities for your kids to entertain themselves (this is the perfect time to allow the extra screen time that your kids likely clamor for).
The most important thing you can do to help protect yourself and everyone else in your vehicle is to use your seatbelts correctly on every leg of every trip. Make it your policy not to put the car in drive before everyone is buckled up.
If You Are in a Car Accident
If you are involved in a car accident despite your best efforts, it’s important to know what to do to help you stay safe. While the circumstances of your accident will be unique, the steps you should take to ensure your safety and the safety of everyone else involved include the following:
- Pull your car as far out of the line of traffic as it is possible for you to do.
- Help everyone in your car exit the vehicle safely and swiftly.
- Call 911.
- If anyone at the scene is injured, render aid to the best of your ability.
- Accept medical attention if it is offered by paramedics at the scene. If it isn’t, seek the medical attention you need upon leaving the scene.
- Carefully follow your doctor’s instructions to assist your ability to heal as completely as possible.
Know Where You Are Going
An important component of road trip safety is knowing where you are going and planning a route that avoids major road construction, but that sticks to well-maintained roadways. While having your phone’s GPS set to your destination before you take off can be invaluable, it’s also important to take a paper map in case your phone loses connection with a signal. When you take the time to plan ahead, you can also avoid rush hour traffic in and around major cities, can avoid major events that draw heavy traffic, can determine where you’ll stop for meals, and can even schedule special roadside attractions along the way.
Seek the Legal Counsel of an Experienced South Carolina Car Accident Attorney Today
Regardless of how vigilant you remain behind the wheel, there are plenty of dangerous drivers out there, and accidents happen. That’s why the skilled car accident attorneys at McCravy Law in South Carolina focus their practice on helping clients like you recover on their complete range of physical, financial, and emotional damages. For more information about how we can also help you, please don’t wait to contact or call us at 864-388-9100 today.