Driving distracted is difficult at best and dangerous at worst. Aside from the everyday hazards present outside the car, you have the added chaos of your partner and kids to deal with. From breaking up fights to passing back water bottles, it’s almost impossible to keep your attention where it really needs to be: on your surrounds. Kids under 5 part of that equation? Odds are you’re also adding some severe sleep deprivation to the mix.
It has the potential to be a recipe for disaster. So how can you mitigate that risk? We have 4 ideas to help you stay arrive safely, no matter who’s in the back seat.
Whether you have a second set of hands available or not, you should be prepared for any requests. Keep things like food, drinks, wipes and entertainment in an easy-to-reach spot, and try to have enough of each for every set of hands in the car. Whether it’s a short trip to the shops or a long road trip, it never hurts to think ahead and have the essentials sitting in a handy basket within arms’ reach.
There’s no such thing as too much rest
We’ve all seen Driver Revivers on our family road trips: pit stops that specifically offer a cuppa’ and a biscuit to drivers who need a brief rest. A tired driver is as dangerous as a drunk driver. The risks are increased dramatically when you’re distracted as well. The important thing to do is not hold out as long as you can but stop anywhere you’re able to – preferably before you feel your eyelids closing against your will.
Take away the pressure
There’s enough pressure on you already trying to keep the little ones safe and entertained. Forget adding the extra stress of deadlines. You get enough of that at work; don’t bring it to a road trip! Before you go, have a look at how long the journey is expected to take, and then map out any interesting stops along the way. Now, double the time the journey will take. By taking away the pressure of racing to get to the next destination you can be calmer and alert on the road.
Make an accident kit
Ultimately, you can be as prepared and careful as you want, and you can still end up in a traffic incident. Try having an ‘accident kit’ stored in your car somewhere – this could have a first aid kit, a blanket, and a comprehensive list of phone numbers you may need. This list may include basic emergency numbers, a tow company, the number of a close family member or friend you can rely on, and even a legal firm like GC Traffic Lawyers that specialises in dealing with motoring claims.
Besides these 4 big ones, there are a number of other ways to help the family. Do you have any tried and true systems in place to help you out in the car?