Summer Driving Tips

By Social
In August 2, 2018
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As with any season, summer brings its own share of unique driving hazards. That’s why it’s important when heading out on the roads to be aware of certain things, so that you, and your passengers, arrive at your destination safely.

Road Construction

Although you may know where you are going, that doesn’t mean everyone else will. Tourists may not be familiar with the route and may drive slowly or start and stop suddenly, without warning. That’s why it’s important to leave ample room between you and the cars in front of you at all times and stay calm. Frustration on the road can quickly lead to aggressive and erratic driving behavior.

Remember to also be extra patient around cyclists, large recreational vehicles, and vehicles pulling trailers. If you can’t see their side view mirrors, they likely can’t see you.

Construction

Summer is normally the peak period for road construction because of the weather. Before you head out, you can check on current highway construction projects by monitoring local media or visiting DriveBC for traffic delay information.

Remember to slow down and move over for roadside workers as failing to do so, in B.C., can result in a $173 ticket and three penalty points.

Rest Areas and Lookouts

During summer travels, rest area and lookout exits and on-ramps often have a steady stream of incoming and outgoing traffic so keep your eyes peeled for traffic merging back onto major roadways. If you’re looking for a provincial rest area on your route, click here.

Wildlife

In the summer you may find yourself with some four-legged company out on the road, which unfortunately can be not only dangerous but also deadly. Be aware of any wildlife warning signs, especially in the early morning, at dusk, and during the night. Slow down and look ahead for movements in roadside ditches or reflections of animal eyes in your headlights. Headlights can cause animals, especially deer, to freeze in their tracks. Moose on the hand will often attempt to escape by continuing to run on the road. If this happens, pull over or slow a very low speed until the animal is safely off the road.

If you see a dead animal in the roadway, call the police or highway maintenance contractor in your area so it can be safely removed before it causes an accident.

Cyclists

The nice weather means that the roads are enticing to not only motorists but also cyclists. To keep everyone safe:

  • Allow one meter between your vehicle and the cyclist and remember that cyclists do not have brake lights to warn you when they are slowing or stopping
  • Change lanes to pass a cyclist to create as much separation as possible
  • When exiting your vehicle along a curb, or turning right, check your mirrors and blind spots before opening your door. A collision with a car or car door can cause serious injury for a cyclist.
  • Keep out of bike boxes at intersections to help prevent intersection collisions
  • Share sharrows: A sharrow is a symbol showing two chevrons painted above a bicycle, indicating that the whole bike lane is shared between vehicles and bicycles. It’s often used to help cyclists reduce the risk of hitting road edge hazards, such as an open car door.
  • Respect that bike lanes are reserved for cyclists NOT vehicles.

Children

Sunny weather and longer days mean more hours for children to enjoy the great outdoors, often near busy roadways. Be extra careful when passing children on bicycles, roller blades, skateboards, or even just kids playing on the side of the road. If you’re driving around parked cars, be cautious of children darting out from behind them. Stick to designated speed zones near playgrounds and schools where children may be enjoying the playgrounds or fields.

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Wherever your summer travels take you, at Access Roadside Assistance we want to help keep you safe. In addition to making yourself aware of these common summer driving hazards, we also encourage you to make sure you have a current membership and understand what it covers. Call us at 1-866-224-5989 with any questions about your membership. Safe travels!

 

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