Schools are out and the summer driving season is here! With many Hoosiers planning summer vacations, the Indiana State Police reminds motorists of the following safety tips.
- Make sure you are well rested. A fatigued driver is a dangerous driver.
- Avoid tailgating; remember the two-second rule. When the vehicle ahead of you passes a landmark, such as a road sign, there should be a two-second interval before your own vehicle reaches the landmark.
- Make sure everyone is buckled up.
- Don't drive distracted
- Move over and slow down for emergency and highway service vehicles.
Check Your Tires
- Tire care is especially critical in warm weather because long trips, heavy loads, high speeds and higher temperatures all put additional stress on your tires.
- Be sure your tires are properly inflated. Check your tire pressure often with a gauge, especially on long trips. Measure when the tires are cold, before you drive on them. You can find the recommended inflation pressure in your owner's manual, on a label frequently found in the glove box, or near the door latch on the driver's side.
- Make sure there is enough tread on your tires. All grooves should be visible and deep enough to at least touch the top of Lincoln's head on a penny inserted head first in the tread. Low tread or bald tires are unsafe and need to be replaced.
- Make sure your tires are wearing evenly. If some spots on the tire seem to be wearing faster than others, you could have misaligned wheels, worn shock absorbers, or other potential problems. Make sure your tires are aligned and balanced properly.
Keep Kids Safe
- Teach children not to play in, on, or around cars.
- Always lock car doors and trunks -- even at home -- and keep keys out of children's reach.
- Always make sure all child passengers have left the car when you reach your destination. Don't overlook sleeping infants.
Keep an Emergency Kit
- Your vehicle emergency kit should include:
- a charged cell phone
- flash light
- fire extinguisher
- a first aid kit
- On hot days, the temperature inside vehicles can rapidly exceed 100 degrees. Never leave your child unattended in a vehicle, even with the windows down.
- When securing your child in a safety restraint system in a car that has been parked in the heat, check to make sure seating surfaces and equipment (child safety seat and safety belt buckles) aren't too hot.
- Use a light covering to shade the seat of your parked car. Consider using shades on windows.
- Maintain your vehicle's cooling system as recommended in your owner's manual.
- If your car overheats - or if you are doing regular maintenance at home - never remove the radiator cap until the engine has thoroughly cooled.
As with any travels you are planning please let someone know your route of travel and itinerary. Following these tips will allow you and your family to have a fun and safe summer.
Further Reading for Summer Travel Safety: