Summer is always an exciting time because it offers a variety of fun opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors. These include going out with friends, taking an out-of-town vacation, visiting the mall, or simply having a relaxing road trip.
Indeed, nothing can beat summer fun, but the season also has its share of danger, and if you decide to throw caution to the wind, chances are high that your summer getaway will not be accident-free. As with everything in life, moderation is crucial, especially if you want to avoid car accidents.
Fun and Summer Driving
It’s always fun driving in summer. “Not a cloud in the sky” as one song said it, you have the sun above you, and as you drive across the open road, a cool summer breeze will brush gently against your face.
Given this, it’s easy to think of summer as the safest .season for driving. After all, there’s practically no danger of heavy snow, flood, landslide, and storms that can cause poor visibility when you’re on the road.
This belief is shared by many as revealed in a recent survey conducted by the University of Minnesota’s Center for Excellence in Rural Safety, (CERS). Its findings showed that 83% of car owners believed that winter is the most dangerous time for drivers as opposed to summer where only 8% said driving in the summer is risky.
The Dangers of Summer Driving
The common belief that summer is a safe driving season often leads many drivers to adopt a carefree attitude once they get to sit behind the wheel. This makes them prone to vehicular accidents which are most common during the summer months per data released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This usually peaks in July and August when about 30% of annual accidental deaths are due to summer car crashes.
Summer Car Accidents
Driving will always carry a certain degree of risk regardless of the season. Summer driving, however, tends to be more dangerous due to factors that often emerge only during this time of the year.
Factors that Increase Summer Car Accident Risk
1. Teenage Drivers
Teenagers form the core of car crashes during summer. School is out at this time of the year and teens are obviously excited about driving their cars and hanging out with their friends. Unfortunately, these young people are hardly proficient in driving and often lack the reflexes, foresight, and maturity to handle possible collisions with pedestrians or with other vehicles.
2. Summer Traffic
Many families usually take long road trips during the summer. This increases traffic and the chances of getting involved in vehicular accidents which often happen in areas near tourist attractions and popular getaway spots.
Some vacationers also drive RV”s (recreational vehicles), or haul boats/watercraft on their way to their summer destinations.This makes them prone to road mishaps especially if they aren’t used to driving large vehicles.
Summertime is vacation time and many popular cities are literally overflowing with tourists during the hot months. Many of them, however, are not familiar with the local roads and will more likely pay attention to their GPS settings while trying to find their way. Given this, they will often make dangerous decisions like driving on one-way roads and making sudden stops.
4. Drinking and Driving
Drinking and driving is clearly a dangerous combination, but is a common car accident risk in summer. This is because the hot summer months are perfect for gatherings where food and wine are served and shared. People usually end up drunk at these get-togethers, and as they drive their way home, they are prone to making poor road decisions that often result in an accident.
5. Distracted Driving
It’s natural for foreign and local tourists to take pictures of the places that they get to visit during summer. The trouble begins when they do this while driving, often with the use of their cellphones. Taking your eyes off of the road even for just a few seconds is hardly a good driving decision.
6. Road Repairs
Summer is a time when more people travel because of the warm weather, but this is also the period when many road construction projects are started in preparation for the wet season. Many roads end up getting closed temporarily and drivers are directed to alternate routes, many of which are unfamiliar to them.This forces many vehicle owners to be extra cautious while driving; otherwise, they could run into a major car accident.
How to Avoid Car Accidents in Summer
Despite increased chances of car crashes in the summer months, these should not dampen your desire to enjoy the festive atmosphere that only this season can bring. Just observe the following driving safety tips and you should be on your way to celebrating summer in a grand fashion:
1. Obey Traffic Laws
To avoid car accidents, drivers should follow all traffic rules always. Some car owners, especially young people, tend to be aggressive.and will sometimes wonder what would happen if they break the law. Beating a red light, entering a one-way street, and driving while under the influence of liquor may appear exciting, but they can have dire consequences: it’s either you get imprisoned or you get involved in a car accident.
2. Be a Defensive Driver
Summer heat can sometimes get into people’s heads and can lead to road rage. At other times, drivers will come up near you and nudge the side of your car for no apparent reason other than to annoy you. It’s the heat of the season, but you should not allow it to rule your emotions. Staying calm is one of those car tips for summer that’s hard to follow but you have to if you want to enjoy the season.
3. Wear Safety Gears
This includes the seat belt for car owners and helmets for motorcycle riders. With the latter, certain safety standards have to be met depending on the place where you plan to spend your summer. Ideally, motorcycle helmets should have shock-absorption features and peripheral vision capabilities.
4. Check Your Vehicle
Before turning on the ignition key, it’s always good practice to do a quick safety check to reduce any car accident risk. Examine your tires, test the brakes, and see if your headlights are working. If you have cargo, make sure that it’s placed securely inside your vehicle.
5. Never Leave Children Inside the Car
Child deaths due to heatstroke while inside a vehicle averaged at 39 for those below 15 years of age. This usually happens when there’s a confusion on the itinerary of a scheduled family trip. Family members assume that the child was brought out by someone else when they get home.
Contact Northwest Collision Center for Effective Car Maintenance Services
When you acknowledge that driving risks are always present regardless of the season, you learn to be cautious even as you consider several car tips for summer to ensure a safe and fun vacation. Checking the condition of your vehicle is a good start and Northwest Collision Center is the perfect choice if you need help.
Find out about our services for auto body repair in St. Petersburg, FL, if you discover that some parts of your car need a replacement or an upgrade. Contact us so we can discuss with you the details of our services. Pick up your phone and make that call now!