Ensure Your Child’s Safety When Driving This Winter.

When driving, it’s a big responsibility transporting any passengers, and extra care and preparation is needed when younger children are in the car.

Are you really driving as safely as you can?

Keeping Your Car in Tip Top Condition

You need to make sure your care is road worthy, that tyres are in good condition, oil and water and screen wash is kept topped up, and that you have a battery charger for those cold winter days when it just won’t start. For the best equipment for your car, you can look at Best Buy Auto Equipment  who can also be a stockist for car parts if you find your car suffering from problems with the engine, clutch etc. Here you can find out the answers to questions such as how much does it cost for a car lift? and can get the best price for equipment.

Distractions

Even taking your eyes off the road for a few seconds can be extremely hazardous. In a few seconds you’ll have travelled several yards, and in that time the situation in front of you can change rapidly.

Are you prone to, say, looking at the radio or heating controls instead of the road? Do you tend to look back to address people in the back seat? Try to curb these tendencies. You owe it to your passengers to maintain focus.

Preparation

Ensure you know the laws regarding child seats. Make sure young children are properly seated and secure. If you’re using child seats, are they still up to the job? Can you fix them securely?

Have you remembered to switch off the airbag if your child is seated in the front? Indeed, can you switch off the airbag in your model of car? If not, be careful of what size child sits in the front as an airbag going off could injure rather than protect them.

Why not re-acquaint yourself with the rules of the road? Your knowledge may be outdated, so check the Highway Code and try some of the questions asked in example driving theory tests.

Check that you have the correct car seat.

Check that you have the correct car seat.

Tiredness and being alert

Do you drive when tired or fatigued? If so, be aware that reduced reactions can have dire consequences. It’s important to take breaks or not even drive in the first place if you think you’re not 100% alert.

Using phones and other equipment

While against the law, do you still use your mobile hand-held while driving? As in ‘distractions’ above anything that takes some or all of your attention off the road is highly dangerous to you and your young passengers.

Use a hands-free Bluetooth device if your car doesn’t have it built in. Even then, protracted and in depth phone conversations on the move are not advisable.

The same applies to adjusting music devices such as iPods or stereos.

dick-smith-bluetooth-handsfree-car-kit_4d771941afb49

 

Margins for error

While modern cars have many safety features designed to reduce the likelihood of accidents, don’t become complacent. For example, in wet conditions slow down rather than rely on your car’s anti-skid features such as stability control and anti lock brakes to get you out of trouble.

Safety equipment is there to help as a ‘back up’ but it can’t compensate for irresponsible driving.

Using sat nav

While sat navs make a big difference to finding the way in unfamiliar territory, be aware of your actions while following directions. When you’re told to turn or change lanes, don’t forget to take the usual precautions such as checking the mirror and indicating properly.

Set Sat Nav before you start driving, or stop to reset it.

Set Sat Nav before you start driving, or stop to reset it.

Safety first

Driving yourself and young family members about is a major responsibility, and there’s much you can do to be safe. A lot is common sense, but preparation and keeping your focus on the driving plays a major part. While you must focus on seats etc, remember that the vast majority of the things you can do to ensure your child’s safety involves your own performance as a safe, responsible driver.

 

Safer Driving this Winter

 

Last year saw some of the most treacherous driving conditions that drivers have had to face for years. Sub Zero temperatures and deep. relentless snow made driving hazardous, with poor visibility and excess amounts of snow, and then sludge on the roads eventually forcing a standstill. The snow was definitely something best enjoyed watching from a window with a mug of hot chocolate but many still had to venture out for work, particularly those who worked for the emergency services.

My Winter Snow picture from Essington

With Winter now just around the corner, the one thing that can be guaranteed, unfortunately, is that there will be more accidents on the roads. Sleet, ice, snow and wind and fog all make conditions difficult, and call for extra care on behalf of drivers.Before Winter is upon us, now is the time to make sure that your vehicle is Winter ready. It is not worth leaving anything to chance when it comes to your car.

  • Extend your Warranty. It is a true fact that any underlying mechanical issues in your vehicle can escalate as temperatures plummet. This makes extending your warranty on your car a good idea. You need to check with your dealership, but many makers do offer this, for instance Audi offers an extended Audi warranty on their cars.
  • Get your car checked over.  Some brands, like Volkswagen, offer this for free. This includes checking the lights, wiper blades, brakes, battery condition and windscreen washers, all of which can suffer in the winter cold and render you stranded. You can check out garages and your own dealership to see if they are offering their own checks and tests.
  • Check those tyres too. The legal tread limit is less effective at removing water, so you may need to change your tyres before you actually reach the legal limit. If you need to replace your tyres, you can buy tyres online with just a few clicks
  • Leave a bigger gap between your car and the one in front, your stopping distance will increase in poor weather conditions.
  • When it does snow – re-route. Avoid country lanes, roads that haven’t been gritted, roads that are little used if at all possible. Your journey may take longer, but it will be safer.

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When you are making journeys, especially longer ones at Christmas, be prepared. Have drinks, mobile phone charger, a torch, blankets and food, just in case you hit a traffic jam or have any other problems.

Driving-in-Snow

Be safe this year rather than sorry.