Tips for safe driving this festive season

13 December 2015

Imperial road safety has put together some tips to ensure that you and your family travel as safely as possible on the roads.

The festive season is one of the busiest months on the road and it pays to know a few things in advance to ensure, as far as possible, that you arrive at your destination safely.

Imperial road safety has put together some tips to ensure that you and your family travel as safely as possible on the roads.

Fight fatigue

One of the main causes of road crashes is fatigue.

There are various reasons for fatigue-related road crashes, including sleep deprivation, sleeping disorders, time of day that you are driving and travelling long distances without a break.

It is important for drivers and their travel companions to be able to identify signs of fatigue, which may include sore eyes, nodding off, constant yawning, drifting over lanes, slow reactions and trouble keeping the head upright.

You can counter driver fatigue temporarily with comfort breaks every two hours, drinking water, eating light foods, listening to music and ensuring good ventilation to name a few.

But the only way to really fight fatigue is by getting sufficient, uninterrupted sleep.

The recommended number of hours is seven to eight hours.

Avoid taking any medicine (including antihistamine tablets) before a long trip as it may cause drowsiness.

Keep your eyes on the road

A ‘quick’ SMS or phone call, or a change of radio stations,takes your mind and eyes off the road.

The mobile phone is one of the biggest distractions to drivers because it demands full attention: visual, manual, and cognitive, and causes you to take your eyes off the road, hands off the steering wheel, and your mind off the road.

For every second we take our eyes and minds off the road, we lose one second in our average reaction and stopping time.

Avoid being distracted.

Focus on the task at hand: driving safely.

Get into the routine of the road safety driving habits:

Ensure you wear your safety belt at all times, refrain from drinking and driving, strap yourself in and ensure your children are restrained in the appropriate car seat, do not speed – especially in reduced visibility situations and remember to keep a safe following distance.

Never overtake on a blind rise or on a corner and make sure that you are always visible by driving with your headlights on, even during the day.

Travel safely by keeping a safe following distance. 

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