For most people, parties with family and friends are probably pretty high on your holiday to-do list. However, it’s also a time to be hyper-vigilant of driving safety. No, you don’t have to pull out your dusty, old driver’s education manual. However, you will want to brush up on a few holiday safe driving essentials that may make your travels safer and easier.
Respect Speed Traps
Pedal to the metal. That’s the way of true road warriors — and those gluttons for punishment who love getting tickets. Speed traps are common during the holidays. Ignore them to your own peril. Police officers will be hiding in carefully-chosen spots waiting for the unsuspecting speed demon to whiz by.
Be smart and ease up on the gas pedal. You don’t want to be slapped with a huge fine because of recklessness. It’ll ruin your holidays and probably your bank account if you aren’t too careful.
Perform a Routine Maintenance Check
Fall and winter are ideal seasons to get a tune up and prepare your vehicle for cooler weather. The last thing you want is to be driving from LA to Chicago for a family Christmas party, only to find yourself stranded in Colorado because you didn’t get your vehicle winterized.
Check your fluids and ensure your windshield wiper fluid is freeze-resistant. Check the tread on your tires to verify it’s in good condition — just in case you encounter snow or ice. When in doubt, take your vehicle to your neighborhood auto mechanic and let them handle this for you.
Avoid Driving Fatigued
It’s tempting to drive fatigued, especially if you have a long drive ahead — but don’t do it. Your reaction time slows down, and you risk endangering yourself along with everyone else on the road. Get plenty of sleep the night before or get someone else to help with the drive while you nap.
Plan Your Route Ahead of Time
If you have a long drive ahead, it’s best to plan your route in advance to avoid distracted driving. Print out the directions and save them to your smartphone or GPS before you get behind the wheel. This will help you keep your eyes on the road rather than on fumbling with your device.
If you’re doing the driving, plan to leave early for the party. This works for in-town and out-of-town shindigs. You’ll save time, minimize stress and be less tempted to speed. Rushing will only make you a prime target for hungry speed traps, and it’ll increase your chances of having an accident, too. While it may not always be fashionable, planning to get to the party early leaves a little cushion for the unexpected.
Avoid Alcohol or Don’t Drive at All
If you’re going to be drinking during holiday parties, you should never get behind the wheel. Intoxicated driving could land you in jail, the hospital or both. Instead, assign a designated driver ahead of time. You may also plan on getting a taxi or Uber driver. You can schedule an Uber ride up to 30 days in advance, so planning ahead should be a breeze.
Call 12 Keys Rehab for Help
If you’re struggling with alcohol addiction and find yourself intoxicated year-round, call 12 Keys for help today. Our compassionate staff will help you develop an individualized treatment plan for your unique situation. Contact us 24/7 for a personal, confidential consultation.