During tourist season, it’s not rare to see spikes of auto accidents across the region. After all, the roadways are busier, and tourists are often traveling in unfamiliar areas. While locals drive these roadways each day, someone coming for a family vacation won’t know where the blind spots are, where the difficult exits may be, or exactly where their desired destinations are. For locals, this can be stressful, but there are things you can do to avoid finding yourself in a tourist related accident. 6 tips for staying safe on the road during Southwest Florida’s tourist season are:
• Don’t rely solely on your mirrors – While the mirrors on your vehicle help you to be more aware of your surroundings, they may not show everything. Your mirrors can leave blind spots that may be hiding vehicles or pedestrians, so relying solely on them can leave you at risk of an accident. Check your mirrors, and then turn to check these blind spots with your eyes whenever possible when pulling out of parking spaces, pulling into traffic, or driving through pedestrian-heavy areas.
• Keep your music down – Driving through Southwest Florida on a sunny spring day does something to make you want to roll the windows down and crank the radio up, but it’s important to resist. Loud music can make it difficult to hear pedestrians or other vehicles nearby, essentially taking away one of your most important driving senses. Keep the music low and keep your ear out for the sounds of traffic around you.
• Strictly follow the rules of the road – It’s common to loosen your grasp of road rules as you grow more confident and comfortable driving. In those first few years of being a driver, you may remember strictly following every rule, tip, and trick found in your driver’s manual. In the years following, you might find yourself “cutting corners” as your confidence grows. It’s important to remember that no amount of confidence can stop an accident but following the rules of the road can help to keep you safe.
• Plan around the main roadways – If you’re able, planning your route around the main roadways can help you to avoid tourist traffic. If you can take a major highway to a destination, or choose to take backroads, the extra few minutes on the backroads can be worth your while if they help you to avoid an accident.
• There’s nothing wrong with taking breaks – If you’re driving to a further away destination, or you find yourself getting frustrated with traffic, there is nothing wrong with taking a break. Driving frustrated is a lot like driving distracted, and this can make you more likely to find yourself in an accident.
• Take it slow – It can be easy to get a little speedy on familiar roads. However, what is familiar to you might not be familiar to everyone. Take it slower during tourist season so you can better avoid accidents with distracted drivers, lost motorists, or pedestrians. Keeping a safe distance and remaining alert can go a long way in keeping you safe on the road.
If you’ve been in a car accident in Southwest Florida, injury attorney Corbin Sutter can help. Before you go through the claims process with your insurance provider, contact us at AllInjuriesLawFirm.com.