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Summer Road Trips and Crashes

Many people take to the roads when the summer months arrive. Whether it’s cross-country or across the state, summer is the most popular time of the year for vacations and extended weekends. But it is important for travelers to make vehicle safety their top priority. Driving with a heightened awareness of the traffic dangers that may be on the road with you, avoiding reckless driving behaviors, and making sure your vehicle has been inspected and maintained before you leave are all ways that help ensure you arrive safely to your destination.

Vehicle Maintenance

Although vehicle maintenance should always be a priority, it is especially important to make sure your car is in top working order before heading out on a summer road trip. Mechanical issues can cause scenarios that put you and other commuters in danger. You could lose control of your vehicle and crash or break down on the side of the road, putting yourself at risk of being struck by another vehicle.

 

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Having your mechanic thoroughly inspect your vehicle before you leave should be on your going away to-do list, however, there are also issues that every driver can check and address right away. Some of these include the following:

  • Make sure all belts and hoses are firmly attached and that they are in good working order. Check for weak spots, holes, or other issues that could cause the belt or hose to break.
  • Make sure that your tires have the proper inflation pressure and that there is good tread on all four tires. Also check to make sure there are no bumps or bulges which could lead to a dangerous blowout while driving.
  • If your brakes are squealing or squeaking, have the brake pads changed immediately.
  • Check engine oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, and other liquids to make sure they are at their proper levels.
  • Make sure head, brake, tail, and turn signal lights are working. Cleaning these lights will also help increase visibility.
  • Make sure windshield wipers are in good working order.
  • Make sure you have an emergency kit in your vehicle that includes a flashlight, extra batteries, an extra phone charger, bottled water, and snacks.

On the Road

Once you embark on your travel, it is important to avoid any reckless driving behaviors that could cause a crash. Some of the more common types of dangerous behaviors that our legal team sees in the car accident lawsuits we handle include the following:

  • Distracted driving, including talking on cell phones and texting
  • Speeding or going too fast for the road or weather conditions
  • Drowsy driving which can cause the driver to fall asleep or not be fully aware of what is going on around them.
  • Aggressive driving, such as improperly passing, failure to yield, or tailgating.
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. This also includes driving while taking prescribed medications that may make you drowsy or have other side effects that could affect your driving skills.

If you see a driver who is obviously engaged in some kind of dangerous driving or aggressive behavior, create as much space between your vehicle and their vehicle as you can. If it is safe to do so, consider pulling over the side of the road until they are well ahead of you.

Contact a North Carolina Injury Attorney

If you have been injured in a crash caused by a negligent or reckless driver, contact a North Carolina car accident attorney to see what type of financial damages you may be entitled to. The legal team from Shapiro & Appleton have been advocating for injured clients since 1985 and will do all we can to ensure you receive the best possible outcome under the circumstances of your case. If you would like to meet with one of our skilled North Carolina car accident attorneys to find out how we can help, call us today at 800-752-0042 for a free case evaluation.

Randall E. Appleton
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Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Lawyer Serving Va Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake & all of Virginia