The most Americans in seven years will travel by car during the Fourth of July weekend-a whopping 41 million, as projected by AAA.
The Northeast is a particularly popular tourist destination during weekends like Memorial Day and the Fourth of July, with families flocking to destinations like Boston, Cape Cod and the Islands, as well as up North.
“With school out for summer, the Fourth of July holiday is typically the busiest summer travel holiday,” said Lloyd P. Albert, AAA Southern New England senior vice president of public and government affairs. “In line with tradition, most travelers are celebrating their newfound summer freedom with an all-American road trip.”
According to the national motor club, 8 out of every 10 people will be traveling by car, a 1.9 percent increase from last year. At Altman & Altman, would like to send a friendly reminder to everyone who expects to hit the road this weekend, to keep these tips in mind to ensure you and your family has a safe and happy holiday.
– Be sure your car is prepared for a long trip: Before you leave, have your car inspected to make sure it’s in proper working condition. Make sure you have no malfunctioning headlights, brake lights, brakes, and check tire pressure before departure.
– Always, ALWAYS plan ahead: prior to departure, plan your trip by mapping your route, researching guidelines and where there will be rest stops, food and gas stations. Make copies of your insurance as well as your roadside assistance cards, in case you misplace them during your trip. Also be sure that you’ve packed extra chargers for your cell phone or have a car charger on hand, a first-aid kid, as well as the proper mechanical tools, should you get a flat tire.
– If you are tired, pull over: Driving while tired is one of the easiest ways to get into a car accident. If you’re tired, pull over into a well-lit area or rest area and take a 20-minute nap. While slightly delaying your trip, you can save yourself a lot of trouble by pulling over and getting rest.
– Avoid cell phone use when driving: While it is important to have an operating cell phone in case of emergencies on your trip, it is very easy to get distracted by text message or phone calls on the road. Store your cell phone in an accessible place in your car, but resist the temptation to use it if it is unnecessary, it could save your life or the lives of others if you do so.
– Do not drink and drive: Alcohol consumption is elevated during the holidays, however drinking and driving is never an acceptable action in which to partake. If you drink and drive, you’re putting not only your life at danger, you are putting the lives around you at danger. Make sleeping arrangements or establish a designated driver prior to your holiday travel.
– Eliminate distractions: Eating and drinking while driving are two common distractions which endanger drivers. Make scheduled stops to eat and drink before you drive to eliminate these risks.
– Keep your kids (and pets) cool: While the temperatures in New England aren’t expected to be too high this weekend, it is still important to remember for this summer, that this is the season where children and pets are at the greatest risk for heat-related illness and fatalities. Protect your children from heatstroke by never leaving them unattended in vehicles. On hotter days, pack water, popsicles and icepacks in case they get too warm. For pets, while in certain temperatures it is safe to leave the window down for some ventilation for a short period of time-it’s never a good idea to bring your pet out with you when the heat is high. Cars heat up exponentially when they are not being air conditioned, putting your pet at risk for a fatal injury.