Tips for Summer Driving Safety

Summer driving has its share of hazards. Driving in hot weather, particularly heatwave conditions, can pose significant challenges and risks to the health and safety of drivers, passengers and other road users. This summer, stay safe as you are hitting the road. Below we share some of the tips to follow in order to avoid hot weather hazards:

 

v Inspect your vehicle. Always do a routine inspection of your vehicle during this summer season. Check tyres and tyre pressure, secure and test the battery, listen to and feel the brakes, check belts and hoses, and also check oil and coolant levels amongst other essential things. Clean oil is especially important during the summer. Oil helps your car prevent overheating, lubricating moving parts safely.

 

 

v Avoid sun-glare. You can do so by utilising your sun visor, keeping your windshield clean and free of cracks, keeping your dashboard free of glossy items that can reflect light or wear dark sunglasses as a precautionary measure. In fact, sunglasses are not just accessories for looking good. They can also help the driver to avoid the sun’s glare, which may cause accidents as it impairs visibility.

 

v Pack an emergency preparedness kit. Be ready to do quick repair jobs for roadside emergencies with basic supplies. Your vehicle emergency kit should include the first aid kit (bandages, medical tape, curved scissors, antibiotic ointment, antiseptic wipes, hot and cold pack amongst other essentials), jumper cables, water, spare tyre, mobile phone and charger, non-perishable food, flashlight and batteries, and tow strap amongst other things.

 

 

v Watch out for distracted drivers. Distracted driving is an act of driving while doing another activity that takes your attention away from driving. Drivers are not immune to distraction and need to maintain their good driving habits. Every driver is responsible for learning to deal safely with the things that may affect their driving. The subconscious mind may notice a distraction, but the conscious mind needs to weed it out and concentrate on the more important driving tasks. Using cell-phones or other devices while driving has proven to be deadly. 

 

v Pay special attention to your tyres and be ready for blowouts. Heat makes tyres more prone to blowouts in summer. Proper tyre inflation is important for good gas mileage and safe tyre wear. During the summer season, proper tyre inflation is especially important to keep your tyres running cool with the right amount of pressure to avoid a dangerous blowout. Use the manufacturer’s recommendation found inside your driver’s door jamb to determine the proper level for your tyre pressure. You should also visually inspect your tyres for irregular wear, low tread, and other problems.

 

v Keep hydrated. This is important for overall health and well-being. When we feel dehydrated, the situation might be much worse than that and many drivers may not drink enough water to replenish what has been lost. Keeping a fully stocked supply of water inside your vehicle is exceptionally helpful in making sure you have enough water to drink. Drinking water ahead of time before exhibiting any symptoms of dehydration also helps make sure you do not get dehydrated while driving, which helps keep drivers alert.

 

v Check your air conditioning. The vehicle’s air conditioning system is important because it helps to keep the body cool and comfortable in the heat. Without it, drivers may be subjected to dangerously hot temperatures inside the vehicle, so it is important to make sure your air conditioning system is functioning correctly.

 

v Always obey speed limits. Remember to always practice safe driving habits. All of the dangers associated with speeding heighten when the weather is bad. Hot temperatures can cause the air in your tyres to expand. Even strong, new tyres can blowout during a heat wave.

 

 

A little planning and some safety checks might spare you from dealing with the consequences of a breakdown or worse, a road traffic crash during this summer season. Have a good summer, and please put safety first. Be a responsible driver.

Inserted by TSCZ, Operations Research and Marketing Section

Readers can contact TSCZ on the following email: research@trafficsafety.co.zw

 

 

 

The Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe emerged from the Zimbabwe Traffic Safety Board which originated from a voluntary organisation composed of area associations in Harare (then Salisbury), Bulawayo, Gweru (then Gwelo) and Mutare (then Umtali).

Harare
(Sat - Thursday)
(10am - 05 pm)

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