While road trips can be a fun way to travel around, they can also be mind-numbing if you’re stuck in a car or behind the wheel for hours on end. Especially if you’re driving through an area that isn’t particularly beautiful or doesn’t have things to keep your attention, you may start engaging in behaviors that could put yourself and everyone else on the road in danger of an accident. So to help ensure that this doesn’t happen, here are three tips for safe driving while on an extended road trip.
Practice Proper Posture
To keep your body and mind at full alert and to ensure that you maintain proper control of your vehicle, it’s important that you prioritize your posture when sitting at the wheel. According to Monica Bernstein and Ingela Ratledge, contributors to Parents.com, many people actually sit too far away from the steering wheel and have bad posture, which can make your body and mind more susceptible to fatigue. To situate your body safely in the driver’s seat, try to keep both your knees and elbows slightly bent when touching the pedals or holding the steering wheel. This will allow you to really push on the brakes if you need or take total control of the wheel if an emergency arises.
Try Not To Rush
One of the best things you can do for yourself when going on a road trip is to give yourself time and take any pressure off that would cause you to rush. When you’re in a rush on the road, you can drive more recklessly and get yourself and others in dangerous situations. To ensure that you’re not in too much of a rush on the road, Drive-Safely.net recommends that you plan breaks every two to four hours while being on the road and that you ensure you’re able to get at least eight hours of a sleeping break at night. If you add this time into your total travel time, you’ll be able to ensure you’re actually taking those breaks and not viewing them as cutting into your trip.
Limit Your Distractions
Arguably the biggest cause of accidents on the road today is distracted driving. According to Yahoo Travel and MentalFloss.com, doing even little things that require you to take your eyes off the road for just a split second could put you and all those around you in jeopardy. Luckily, with good planning, you can limit a lot of the distractions that could make your driving dangerous. Try to keep things like your phone or GPS under the control of a passenger or at least clear of your reach. If you have kids, make sure they are well stocked and taken care of before you hit the road, and teach them not to bother you too much when you’re driving. Also, have things like your music and thermostat set before you take off on your trip.
To ensure your next road trip is completed safely, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you practice safe driving.