It may only be October, but with just less than nine weeks until Christmas it’s time to start preparing for the festive season. No, we’re not talking about buying gifts and planning parties; we’re talking about how to keep yourself, your family, and other road users safe on the roads this Christmas.
The festive season is a busy time of year for many of us. The desire to spend time with loved ones leads to an increased number of vehicles on the roads. Challenging road conditions, traffic jams, and bored kids in the back seat can test the patience and concentration of even the most calm and collected driver.
Don’t let the harsh winter weather and the festivities add up to a dangerous driving situation, read on to find out how you can stay safe behind the wheel…
Driving at night
None of us particularly enjoy driving in the dark. Visibility is seriously reduced, making hazards a bit trickier to anticipate; pair this with adverse winter weather conditions and you could have a recipe for disaster. There are a few things you can do to stay safe on the road at night:
- Use your lights properly: If you’re driving on busy roads then use your dipped headlights to avoid dazzling oncoming vehicles. Full beam headlights should only be used on quiet roads that don’t have street lamps, and only when there’s no oncoming traffic.
- Drive at an appropriate speed: Driving in the dark reduces your visibility so make sure you drive at a speed which is appropriate to the road and weather conditions; i.e. slow enough that you could make a safe emergency stop if a hazard arose.
We all want the festive season to be a time for relaxation and celebration. However, the reality is often that we’re running around like headless chickens trying to sort out last-minute gifts and fight for the last turkey in the supermarket. Your patience can start to wear a little thin and cloud your judgement behind the wheel. Don’t let the increased amount of traffic on the roads lead to dangerous driving:
- Avoid driving at peak times: Yes, we know this is easier said than done, but do try to consciously avoid times when the roads are busier; i.e. don’t embark on a long journey during rush hour, try setting off early in the morning or drive overnight.
- Be a conscientious driver: Consider other road users at all times. Leave plenty of space in front of you so that other drivers can merge with ease, and always be vigilant to cyclists and motorbikes who may be weaving in and out of stationary or slow-moving traffic. If you’re stuck in a traffic jam make sure you still adhere to the Highway Code by not blocking junctions or pedestrian crossings.
Join us in part two of this blog when we’ll be looking at more ways in which you can stay safe on the roads during the busy festive season. Don’t let adverse winter weather conditions or the temptation of a few beers after work endanger you and other road users.