How many times have you heard or declared this phrase? Yet, how many times have we seriously thought about what that means? As an occupational safety professional, I can say that I frequently think about the specifics of having a safe trip, as we want all of our employees to travel safely. Naturally, I want the same for you. Now that summer has arrived, Regent students will drive home to families, take cross-country road trips and study across the country and globe. In this post, I want to share some tips from a National Safety Council Safety and Health Fact Sheet, on preparing for your next getaway.
- Prepare yourself. Pay attention to weather forecasts for the areas where you will be traveling and ensure you know your route well or have plenty of guidance. Make sure you are well rested and safe to drive (no alcohol or prescription medications that may affect your abilities).
- Prepare your car. Make sure your car has a full tank of gas and has received a checkup that includes preparations like fresh antifreezeand a battery check.
- Prepare your supplies. In addition to your normal emergency supplies, such as a spare tire, a tire jack, flashlight and jumper cables, make sure you have matches, drinking water and non-perishable foods, which can become essential even when faced with minor travel problems.
- Prepare your plan. Plan your trip so that you are not in a hurry. Be sure to notify a responsible adult that you have left and when they should expect your arrival. If you have a mobile phone, make sure you have plenty of battery power or a battery charger. Finally, know what to do in case you are stranded:
- Try not to leave your car.
- Attract attention with flares and flags.
- Keep at least one window open slightly.
Accidents and emergencies rarely occur at convenient moments. Do not believe you are prepared; be sure you are prepared by confirming the items listed above.
One final note: all of these preparations will not protect against distracted driving. Be sure that you focus on what you are doing when you are behind the wheel. Not only does your safety count on it, but others do as well.
Here is a link to the National Safety Council website and their library of safety and health fact sheets: http://www.nsc.org/news_resources/Resources/Pages/SafetyHealthFactSheets.aspx.
The resource sheet on safe driving can be found at http://www.nsc.org/news_resources/Resources/Documents/Winter_Your_Car_and_You.pdf.
Permission to reprint granted by the National Safety Council, a membership organization dedicated to protecting life and promoting health.
Have a safe trip!