Drive safe this holiday weekend

Published 10:43 pm Thursday, June 29, 2017

Fourth of July weekend is finally here, and with the long weekend many families will be hitting the road for a brief getaway from day to day life.

In fact, according to AAA, a record breaking 44.2 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home for the holiday. That is 1.25 million more travelers then last year, making it more important then ever to take basic safety measures while traveling.

And while there will be a multitude of entertainment options in town this weekend, we have compiled a list of simple safety tips for residents who would rather get away from it all for the weekend:

  • Do not use your phone or other electronic devices while driving. If you need to call someone or send a text pull over. Even the seconds it takes to send a text can result in a slower reaction time and an accident.
  • Do not multi task while driving. Authorities report that one of the leading causes of accidents is distracted driving.
  • Be aware of what other drivers around you are doing, and expect the unexpected because the odds are that someone else you encounter on the road this weekend will be talking on the phone and eating while flying down the highway, and you should not have to face the consequences of those actions.
  • Build time into your trip schedule to stop for food, rest breaks and phone calls. Doing so will ensure that you arrive safe, and probably in a better mood.
  • On a related note, pull over to eat. The minutes that you save eating on the road are not worth a potential accident while you are digging for a fry at the bottom of the bag.
  • Secure cargo that may move around while the vehicle is in motion because the last thing you need is the pool floats to break free while you are cruising down I-85.
  • Don’t attempt to retrieve items that fall to the floor. Yes, we know you need that charger that just slid into the floor board, but please stop somewhere safe instead of trying to lean over and grab it while driving 80 miles an hour.
  • Avoid driving while tired, as it can be almost as dangerous as driving drunk. (Everyone knows not to drive drunk, right?)
  • And finally, last but certainly not least: always wear a seatbelt, and make sure that other passengers are wearing their seatbelts because like the tv ad says, the life you save could be your own.

We hope you all have a great holiday weekend, and stay safe on the roads.