Drivers in Virginia and North Carolina can impact road safety year round by following defensive driving tips:
- Maintain your car: Go to a auto shop to have a routine check of the car done before going on a long trip. Get all fluids checked, pump air into the tires, and make sure brakes are in top condition. Keep inside a car an emergency kit that includes jumper cables, flash light, tire gauge, first-aid kit and rags.
- Wear seat belts: According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, buckling up saves lives, reducing bodily injuries and deaths by about 50%. Secure your kids in appropriately fitted car seats.
- Don't drink or do drugs before driving: All 50 states and the District of Columbia have laws making it a crime to drive with a blood alcohol concentration at or above a certain level, currently 0.08. Drinking alcohol or doing controlled substances prior to driving slows reaction time and impairs coordination and judgment.
- Follow speed limits: Leave early to prevent the need to speed when running late.
- Don't get distracted: Do not do things in a car that distract your focus from the road. Do not get into emotional discussions with a passenger, text or use the cell while driving. Do not eat, read a newspaper or put on makeup while driving.
- Secure pets: Secure cats and dogs in the event of sudden stops. A loose pet may crash through the windshield or distract a driver.