03 Oct Easter Road Safety
Easter Road Safety
Easter is a joyous occasion celebrated the world-over and a time of year that families travel far and wide to spend the long weekend together. However, the stark reality is that this holiday is accompanied by an increase in road fatalities which, in some cases, may be avoided by planning and preparation. Below are some simple, yet effective tips to get you to your destination safely.
Get a good night’s sleep
Driver fatigue is a major contributing factor to road accidents. With many people covering vast distances during the holidays it is critical to be well rested and refreshed prior to starting your journey. Whilst it may be seem like a good idea to get a jump on the traffic by leaving during the midnight-to-morning hours, the reality is this will greatly disturb your sleep cycle leaving you drowsy later in the day. Stick to your normal sleep cycle in order to be alert behind the wheel.
Take a break
Stop every 2 hours for a 15 minute break. You can find rest stops on your route at www.driverreviver.com.au/ . A microsleep is a short episode of sleep that can last anywhere from 1 second to 30 seconds. They occur during times of sleepiness, generally without warning. It’s a very light sleep. Often the person having the microsleep won’t even be aware they had just nodded off. Perhaps the most troubling aspect of microsleep episodes is that they’re common at the wheel, and they can lead to accidents. In fact, microsleep has been said to be the most common cause of falling asleep behind the wheel.
Be aware of speed limits on unknown roads. Remember, it is double demerit points all Easter weekend.
Remember that everyone is in the same position as you. Don’t get frustrated is you are stuck behind a caravan. Be patient and wait until you reach dual lanes or only overtake when it is 100% safe to do so.
Prepare your vehicle
Conduct a 5 point safety check on tyres, brakes, suspension, lights and restraints.
Check your tyre pressure when your tyres are cold, as under inflation of tyres can cause excessive tyre wear and tear. Correctly inflated tyres will also improve your fuel economy.
Make sure your lights are working for any night time driving you may do over the long weekend. It’s also a good time to clean the lenses for maximum visibility.
Check your battery strength- a dead battery is not what you want when you’re due at the in-laws place for the traditional family egg hunt.
Remember, not everything is open over this long weekend, so make sure you have all your supplies, from spare tyres to extra oil.
Plan your trip
Plan a safe route on well-lit roads and work out your rest stops and overnight stays beforehand.
Have your GPS set. For those who haven’t graduated to GPS technology yet, get out that trusty map!
Don’t waste fuel and time driving around looking for your destination.
Share the driving
If there is more than one driver in the car, share the load. This gives everyone the chance to have a nap and recharge their batteries if you are driving a long distance.
If you are a lone driver, remember to take a break. Rather add extra time to your trip due to rest breaks then drive tired and risk injuring yourself and others.
Keep safe on the roads this long weekend and have a fun, happy and relaxing Easter!