It’s that time of year again—the imminent chill of winter is in the air. Soon enough, the weather outside will be frightful. While some may be dreaming of a white Christmas, people with holiday road trip plans have likely added good driving conditions to their holiday wishlist. Inclement weather combined with end-of-the-year stress can make for some crazy road conditions, but luckily, there are lots of things you can do to stay safe on the winter roads. Whether you are road-tripping across states or simply transporting holiday gifts from a local store back to your home, we have some tips that will help you stay safe this holiday season.
1. Plan ahead
Before you hit the roads this winter, make a list and check it twice—or in other words, be prepared. Planning ahead will help you reduce stress because you'll have a backup plan if road conditions become less than ideal. Here are some things you can do to prepare:
- If you have flexible travel dates, pick a day when the weather forecast is clear. If there is a blizzard in the forecast, it’s probably worth leaving a day or two before the snow starts falling.
- Bring an emergency kit with you. Blankets, water, energy bars, and extra charger cables are a few necessities you should have on-hand if you’re going to be driving long distances.
- Leave early. Focusing on the roads will be much easier if you aren't stressing about making it to grandma’s house in time for the figgy pudding.
2. Check road cameras
Unfortunately, sometimes driving in snowy or icy conditions is unavoidable. If you find yourself in one of these situations, there are still things you can do to ensure safe travels. For example, many states have road surveillance infrastructure which allows drivers to check road conditions in real-time. Knowledge is power, and knowing real-time road conditions will allow you to opt for roads where conditions are less dangerous.
3. Stay in well-lit areas
A winter wonderland quickly turns into a nightmare when you have to drive on poorly lit, ice-covered roads. Freezing temperatures, lack of light, and uncleared roads are a recipe for disaster for even the most experienced drivers. If you will be driving at night, try and stick to well-known, well-lit roads that will be a little easier to navigate than obscure backroads.
Staying in well-lit areas is also a good piece of advice to adhere to in parking lots on any stops you may make along the way. If you are traveling with bags full of holiday gifts, leaving your car unattended in a poorly-lit area gives criminals the perfect opportunity to strike. When possible, park near lights, surveillance cameras, or security signs to make your car less of a target.
4. Remain alert
At LiveView Technologies (LVT), we are so passionate about the importance of remaining alert that it’s one of our slogans—we don’t blink. Since your eyes aren’t cameras, you obviously have to blink, but the sentiment is still relevant where driving is concerned. Staying alert while driving will help you avoid black ice and other potential catastrophes. Always make sure you are well-rested before embarking on a trip so that the roads have your full attention.
Holiday festivities draw people out of their homes and onto the roads, and unfortunately, not everyone prioritizes safe driving. You can’t control what other drivers do, but you can keep yourself off the naughty list by driving cautiously and courteously this winter. If you're interested in learning how LVT makes roads safer, ask us about our infrastructure surveillance solutions today.