As we hit the hottest months, it is an excellent time to check in with your driving. Summer brings its own set of dangers to the road. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports a higher number of car crashes, auto-related injuries, and fatalities in July and August. Here is how you can enjoy the season and avoid a summer blunder.
Most construction happens in the warmer months, which also increases roadblocks, traffic jams, delays, and detours. The Federal Highway Administration says an average work zone brings one injury daily and one fatality weekly. This statistic means you should stay alert. Slow down to accommodate any unexpected traffic changes. Merge early before entering the work zone. Anticipate delays and leave your house early to be on schedule. If you can, avoiding construction zones to find an alternative route is the best move.
Hot temperatures cause your tire pressure to increase, and therefore your tires often expand. Unfortunately, tires can blow out when that pressure exceeds the tire’s maximum capacity. These can often happen during a heat wave and can be very scary, especially when driving at high speeds. However, avoiding tire damage is easy; check your tire pressure frequently, carry a spare, avoid potholes, and replace any tires that need a change.
Just like your tires, your engine can also overheat. It can even cause a fire on the road if it gets extreme. If your motor is overheated, pull over immediately and call for help. After about 30 minutes, your engine should be completely cool. To avoid it, check your engine coolant frequently and get your oil changed as your owner’s manual dictates.
In the summer months, we often share the road with bicyclists. The NHTSA showed bicyclist deaths occurred in urban areas between 6 PM and 9 PM when most drive home after work. Be aware of your blind spots and be extra careful when you open car doors, make turns, and change lanes. Be patient and give these bikers plenty of space on the road. They should be treated like slow-moving vehicles.
Have a Plan
While you can do your best, there is always a chance that accidents can happen. Even if you are not in a collision, it is wise to be prepared. Have an emergency road kit to alert others of your car and aid any injuries the drivers may have. Exchange insurance and document the accident with pictures, names, addresses, and witness contact information. If you have enough damage that you need to get your car towed, find a collision center that will work for you. At Performance Collision Centers, no problem is too small! We will handle your vehicle, even if it is a simple fender bender, to get you back on the road for good. Use your pictures at the scene to get your FREE ESTIMATE with our convenient tool. We work directly with your insurance company, and we can even supply a rental car for your convenience. Find a location near you to get the help you need.