In theory, driving in the summer months should be easier than any other time of the year, what with it being lighter and the days being much longer. However, the truth is, these few months can present an array of driving hazards for individuals who are unaware or unprepared.
Our car garage Salisbury has collated some tips and advice on the key things you need to consider when driving this summer. Read on for our top 5 driving hazards you might face.
Driving hazards you should be aware of:
1. Sun glare
Although sun glare can be an issue all year round, it tends to become more of a problem during the summer months. An article from the Daily Mail claims that sun glare accounts for almost 3000 accidents each year. The bright sun low in the sky reduces visibility and can put the driver and passengers at risk, especially in busy areas or traffic.
Sun glare is most intense when driving in the early morning, when the sun is rising and in the evenings, when it’s setting. These times are during the busy rush-hour traffic, so it’s important to stay aware of the road and the vehicles on it. The greatest danger is when the dazzle appears suddenly, for example, when the sun reappears from behind trees or is reflected in a building.
Advice from our car garage Salisbury on how to deal with sun glare
- Adjust your speed to conditions on the road, if you are suffering from glare, slow down.
- Increase your following distance to 4 or 5 seconds, allowing you enough time to react in case the driver in front slams on the brakes.
- Make sure your windshield is always clean, inside and out, and in good condition.
- Avoid using high-gloss cleaners on the interior of your car as they can enhance the glare.
- Keep a pair of sunglasses in your car, and use the car’s sun visor.
- If it is very difficult to see the road, use lane markings to guide you.
It’s important to be careful when on sun glared roads and be wary of cyclists, joggers, dog walkers and children. Even if you are not directly affected by the glare, be aware that other drivers might be which could cause indirect drivings hazards.
2. Overloading your car
When you’re heading away for the weekend, it can be tempting to load up your car as much as you possibly can – you’re not paying for luggage so why restrict it?
This can cause a few driving hazards as the luggage piled in your car can block windows and reduce your field of vision. This can be extremely dangerous as you’ll be less aware of potential hazards if they’re not in eyesight. Try to avoid blocking your windows or viewpoints as much as possible. If it’s still an issue, we recommend you invest in a roof rack and top box to store your items safely.
Another driving hazard of overloading your car is the strain that is put on vehicle tyres. Overloading can cause tyres to overheat and wear out rapidly, which increases the chance of premature, dangerous and expensive repairs, such as blowouts. Try to be mindful of the weight you travel with to reduce these risks and check your vehicle’s handbook for the correct tyre pressure.
If you’re concerned about the condition of your vehicle, visit our car garage Salisbury for a car service or further advice >>
Although people always talk about the strain winter puts on our vehicles, the hot summer months can be equally as challenging to deal with. Driving hazards can occur if your vehicle is not in great condition before the hot weather really takes hold.
As a car garage Salisbury, we recommend you bring your car in for a service to ensure the following are in top condition:
- Engine coolant levels – This prevents the car from overheating during the summertime and saves you from paying for expensive engine repairs.
- Tyres – The AA claims that tyre punctures are the most common cause of breakdowns during the summer. Ensure that your tyres are the correct tyre pressure to reduce the risk of this happening. This information varies from car to car but can be found in your vehicle’s handbook.
- Batteries – Your car’s battery takes a battering during the winter, and many drivers forget to get it checked once the weather is warmer.
- As your local car garage Salisbury, we’ll check your battery for strain and only replace it when necessary.
- Windscreen wash – Clean windscreens help prevent the driving hazard of sun glare, so it’s important to keep it topped up.
- Oil levels – During a car service, we will replace your oil and check that your car has the sufficient amount to complete your summer travels.
We recommend that you have a full car service every 12 months to reduce driving hazards such as breakdowns, as well as maintaining the overall condition of your vehicle. Book your car into our servicing garage in Salisbury here >>
4. Distracted pedestrians and drivers
Extra daylight and warmer temperatures naturally bring more people outside. This can create driving hazards for pedestrians as well as the driver.
To ensure the safety of pedestrians, we recommend drivers to:
- Watch for pedestrians who might be distracted while walking and not paying attention to the roads.
- Drivers who are unfamiliar with local roads may be too busy concentrating on their destination than what’s on the road. It’s best to plan your journey before you leave or pull over to consult directions to reduce driving hazards.
- Look for pedestrians more than once before turning.
- Pay extra attention to pedestrians at night as they can be harder to see.
- Summer vacationers can cause driving hazards as they may be driving overloaded vehicles with obstructed windows, or be sleep-deprived from longer days and activities so pedestrians may need to be aware of drivers too.
Although you should always be vigilant when driving, we understand that summer can bring extra distractions that are not always accounted for. If you need more advice on how to reduce driving hazards this summer, contact our car servicing garage Salisbury here >>
5. Increased traffic
The summer months bring more vehicles on the road for many reasons, but the most common being tourists. The AA predicts that 38% of drivers will be driving more in the UK than they did last year. Greater numbers of tourists flock to the coasts and national parks during the summer and more likely to go on day trips on the weekends. If you’re on motorways or country roads, it means you need to be extra vigilant when switching lanes or approaching crossroads.
If you want to avoid traffic jams and get to your destination on time, you also need to leave yourself enough time for your journey. Being stuck in traffic can make drivers impatient and that can often cause accidents. The key to avoiding this is to be aware of your surroundings and be prepared for heavy traffic during your journey.
If you know you’re going to be travelling on the road a lot this summer, why not see how you can reduce your car’s emissions by reading last months article here >>
Visit Rangers, a car garage in Salisbury
Summertime is a perfect time to kick back and relax from your stressful, busy lives. We hope these tips have been useful in advising you on how to be aware on the roads, and to keep your car in the best condition to avoid driving hazards. If you want to make some changes to improve your vehicle, our experienced team of mechanics will be more than happy to book you in for a car service.
Give us a call on 01980 655555 or email us here to speak to our team.
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