With spring and summer around the corner, you’re probably planning a road trip or two. Whether you’re hoping to travel across the Channel for an epic tour of Europe, or stay a little closer to home in the UK, we’ve got essential tips on how to stay safe on the roads this summer.
Remember your sunglasses
With summer comes some glorious sunny days. It’s important not to be blinded by the sun when driving. If you wear prescription glasses, you could consider getting reactive lenses or a spare pair of shades prescription lenses. To avoid sun glare, make sure you also use your sun visors.
Sunglasses are also a good remedy for hayfever sufferers as the lenses act as a barrier to prevent pollen irritating your eyes as much.
Wear appropriate footwear
If you’re heading to the beach it can be tempting to put on your flip flops. These are a little flimsy and won’t help you should you need to brake sharply. Keep your flip flops for the seaside – instead wear enclosed shoes with a hard, flat sole.
Don’t get too hot
If you drive in hot temperatures for a long time you can easily start to feel drowsy. Make sure you pull over and have a nap if you need one. Drink plenty of water too to prevent getting dehydrated. Make sure you always have a bottle of water to hand on the road.
Check your air conditioning
Most modern cars have air conditioning and it’s certainly a welcome addition on those rare days that reach over 25 degrees in the UK. If you are planning to do lots of driving or longer road trips in the summer months, make sure your air conditioning isn’t on its last legs.
You can also open your windows and sunroof if you have one. You may even be lucky enough to have a convertible.
Check your tyres
Tyre blowouts are more common in hot weather. Make sure you check the inflation and tread depth before going on a long road trip. Remember the minimum tread depth is 1.6mm – anything less than that and your tyres are not fit for the road.
Watch out for the rain!
If there’s heavy rain after a particularly dry spell, surface water on the roads can build more quickly. To avoid aquaplaning, drive a little slower and keep a safe distance from the vehicle in front. If you encounter any flash floods, don’t risk driving through the water – turn back and find another route.
Clean your windscreen
Keeping your windscreen clean will help minimise the effect of sun glare. The sun can highlight any marks which reduce visibility.
Make sure your car is road ready
In 2021, the RAC reported an unprecedented number of staycations during the summer school holiday. With UK residents favouring trips in their own country over holidays abroad, the RAC recommends checking that your car and anything you’re towing is road ready. You should also anticipate delays on motorways, especially heading towards some of the UK’s more popular beauty spots such as Devon and Cornwall.
If you’re in the market to buy a car and looking to buy second-hand, make sure you purchase from a reputable car dealership. With JJ Premium Cars in Cambridgeshire, we complete a 114-point inspection and make sure there’s at least six months MOT left on each vehicle.