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4 Tips for Safer Driving This Holiday Season

Published on Dec. 23, 2019

The winter landscape is beautiful - until you have to drive in all that glistening snow, that is. Follow these four tip tips to help ease your drive and arrive at your holiday destination(s) safely. 

1. Check Your Vehicle. Winter driving conditions can already be challenging enough without the added stress of car trouble – especially when it could have been prevented with a pre-trip check. Before you head out, consider the following:

  • Have I been ignoring any warning lights?
  • Is the oil level good? 
  • What about the battery?
  • Are the tires at optimal air level?
  • Are the lights (including blinkers) all working?
  • Could I use new wipers?
  • Do I have a winter tool kit, including a windshield scraper, a flashlight, snacks and bottled water, a shovel, a phone charger, and a warm blanket?

2. Give Yourself a Break. Driver fatigue led to 800 deaths, 44,000 injuries, and 72,000 crashes from 2009 - 2013, according to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). It’s never a good idea to drive while you’re tired, so avoid heading to your destination late at night or during those key afternoon times when you tend to feel sleepy. Also, give yourself permission to take breaks, and remember that it’s okay to share the driving.

3. Drive Defensively. Just because you chose to be a proactive driver by 1) staying sober 2) driving while awake and refreshed and 3) planning ahead for your drive by double-checking your blinker lights and tire pressure doesn’t mean everyone on the road is as responsible as you are… so buckle up, watch for reckless drivers, and put plenty of space between you and the vehicle ahead of you.

4. Arrive Fashionably Late… and SAFE. If you’re behind a slow driver, the roads are bad, there’s more traffic, or a combination thereof, take a few deep breaths and remind yourself that it’s better to be SAFE than on time. If you don’t like to be late, leave early so any anxiety you might be feeling doesn’t cause you to put extra pressure on your gas pedal.