Thanksgiving Long Weekend Road Trip Tips

Thanksgiving Driving Tips for Every Driver

The last long weekend of the summer is over but it wasn’t a weekend that the Ontario Provincial Police would like to have repeated for the upcoming Thanksgiving long weekend.   The OPP confirmed that it was the most deadliest Labour Day experienced by the law enforcement agency. In total, the weekend saw 12 road fatalities and over 800 charges laid as a result of distracted driving.  Despite continued motorist messaging by the OPP, drivers continue to drive distracted even if it is a long weekend that would otherwise be filled with fun, friends, family and barbeques.

Long Weekend Driving Tips

In anticipation of the Thanksgiving Long Weekend, Young Drivers of Canada would like to remind drivers to stay safe on the roads with the following tips:

Avoid Driver Distractions

1. Never drive distracted. If you cannot control your cellphone use while driving, turn it off and lock it away to avoid any temptation. Let family and friends know that you are driving so that they will not call or text you during your journey. Refrain from eating and drinking at the wheel. Ask passengers to be your navigators and avoid adjusting the GPS or the radio. If you need to attend to children in the back seat, pull over in a safe area to do so. Any attention off the task of driving can be considered a driver distraction.

2. Prepare Your Vehicle for the Journey

Avoid being at the stuck on the side of the road. Mechanical breakdowns can quickly ruin travel plans and ruin a long weekend. Have a mechanic check the brakes, hoses and fluids. Ensure fluids are topped up, and the engine and radiator are in good working order. Tires and their pressure should also be checked to ensure the tread is not worn, and the pressure is correct. Improper inflation and worn tires can cause a vehicle to lose traction on the road quickly.

3. Avoid Driving Tire
Driver fatigue is one of the reasons for collisions. Driving home after a long weekend can take its toll on drivers. For many motorists, long weekends include sleeping in an unfamiliar bed, keeping later hours and eating and drinking too much. Drivers should never drink and drive under any circumstances. Driving while drowsy is distracted driving. If a driver feels tired, the best solution is to pull over in a safe area and rest. It is amazing how quickly your body can rejuvenate with a bit of rest and quite time.

4. Avoid Driving at Peak Times
Avoid driving during peak times. Try to leave early to avoid the traffic. Try to begin your journey on Saturday morning rather than battling the Friday night gridlock. Sometimes attempting to get the most out of a weekend can lead to stress and driver road rage.

5. Plan Your Journey

There is nothing worse than not knowing where you are going. Drivers are encouraged to become aware of their travel plans, especially if they are going to parts unknown. Let family and friends know your travel plans and when they will expect to see you. This will not only prevent cellphone calls and texts but also let everyone know about your travel plans.

Young Drivers of Canada suggests that all motorists use common sense and follow these basic tips to keep everyone safe on the roads. Long weekends are meant to enjoy family and friends. Don’t make this long weekend the last long weekend.