1. DO NOT DRIVE DISTRACTED. That can mean a number of things from texting to talking on the phone to eating/drinking to yelling at your noisy kids in the backseat. Don’t let what seem like harmless activities turn into a tragic situation. Finish what you need to do before you start your car or after you arrive safely at your destination, and request the courtesy of a distraction-free zone from your passengers.
2. NEVER DRINK AND DRIVE. Just don’t do it! If you enjoy some holiday cheer, please choose a designated driver ahead of time. Store the numbers of local cab companies and/or car services in your phone, so you can use it if your night gets out of hand or your DD does. These are lifesaving numbers for you and those that you share the road with. There is a local Designated Driver Program that will pick you up and take your car home. Designated Drivers of Bakersfield.
3. DRIVE WELL-RESTED. Get enough sleep the night before and be fully awake when beginning your trip. Being drowsy when you start driving, no matter what time of day it is, can cause you to fall back asleep behind the wheel. Combat this risk by going to sleep 2 or 3 hours before your regular bed time. This extra sleep will be vital in ensuring a safe trip for you and your family.
4. DON’T EAT HEAVY MEALS ON THE ROAD. Eating carbohydrate-heavy meals while driving isn’t a good option because the body is more sedentary than normal. The carbs are energy for your body, but when you eat the and then sit for hours after, they turn into sugar, which then turns into blood glucose, which in high doses can make even non-diabetic people drowsy or cause them to fall asleep. By keeping the carbohydrates down, it ensures keeping alert while driving.
5. KEEP YOUR MIND ACTIVE. Listening to music you enjoy, talking to people in the car, or taking in the scenery as long as it is safe to do so are all things you can do to stay alert. If your mind has just enough stimulation it will stay engaged in the task of driving and watching out for dangerous situations. But remember, overstimulation can cause you to lose focus, and that could lead to a crash.
6. TIPS TO REMEMBER
o Don’t let distractions in the car take your attention from the road.
o Check the weather forecast before leaving to ensure safe driving conditions.
o Don’t let yourself be bothered by other poor drivers. Being upset or resorting to reactionary jerking of the wheel to avoid others can lead to crashes too.
o If you feel tired, stop and take a few minutes to stretch your legs, go to the bathroom or be physically active for 5 to 10 minutes. Being active will recharge the mind and revitalize you.
o Always wear your safety belt and have proper car seats for the children in your car.
o Most of all, be careful this winter holiday season, and enjoy yourselves with your loved ones!