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The hazards of summer driving

Summer may bring bright skies and sunny weather, but motorists still need to be cautious when driving on our nation’s highways. The clear conditions may cause some to throw caution to the wind and act carelessly, speeding or simply not paying attention. Pennsylvania State Police also report an increase in traffic and motorist assists throughout the summer.

In addition to normal daily traffic this time of year, the roads are filled with travelers heading to their summer vacation destinations. Following are some driving hazards to watch for this summer. With a little planning, many can be avoided.

  • Summer Breakdowns – High temperature can aggravate existing tire damage and cause blowouts and flats. Overheating is another frequent issue for drivers in the summer. The high temperatures and increased use of the car’s air conditioner can cause cooling system problems. Low coolant levels, leaks, and broken electric cooling fans can all result in overheating and damage. You can avoid this by having your vehicle checked for problems and checking the coolant regularly.
  • Sun Glare – We’ve all been driving in the summer and after making a turn are nearly blinded by the glaring sun. Sun glare causes many accidents, particularly under clear skies at dusk or dawn. Keep a clean pair of sunglasses handy in the car with you at all times, and clean the windshield often, inside and out, to remove smears, which can also impair vision.
  • Increased Rainfall – The snow may have melted, but with summer comes more rainfall, and often it can be unexpected and heavy. Motorist should be very aware of the danger of hydroplaning and should check road conditions prior to traveling to be aware of accidents, flooding and closures.
  • Increased Road Construction – States and cities take advantage of the warmer weather months to fix roadways, so constructions projects cause traffic backups and detours on many of our nations highways and other roads during the summer. This can lead to a greater chance of accidents. It is important when driving through construction sites, to always obey the posted speed limits, lane changes, and closures. Be aware at all times and be on the lookout for those “Road Work Ahead” Signs.
  • Inexperienced Drivers – Research found that teen accidents are at their highest between Memorial Day and Labor Day when teens are out of school and on the road. Teens are not as experienced as those motorists who have been driving for years, so it is important to stay alert at all times and be aware of all of the vehicles traveling around you.
  • Fatigue – With increased traveling, which may entail long distances; fatigue is a hazard that you need to watch for. Be sure to take regular breaks, stopping to stretch and for coffee breaks. If you are tired, be sure to pull over in a safe spot, watch signs for safe areas to pull off the road.
  • Tractor Trailers – Truckers generally spend more time on the road than any other motorists, so it’s important to drive safely with them. Try to stay out of their blind spots and keep plenty of room between your vehicle and a truck, which can limit the likelihood of a collision.

If you pay attention to these and other driving hazards, stay alert and cautious, and follow safe driving rules, you will have a safer summer on our nation’s roadways. Talk to your teen about the hazards of summer driving as well, and encourage he or she to act responsibly for a safer summer to avoid car accidents.

If you have been injured in car accident, contact the Pennsylvania personal injury lawyers at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys at 855-866-5529.

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