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Driving Tips for College Students to Prevent Car Accidents

Now that school is back in session, students and their families will be driving back and forth from colleges and universities all over the state and the country. With highways and roads filled with extra travelers, make sure to have the car checked, make sure the car is well stocked and be sure to use extra caution while driving in order to prevent car accidents and personal injury. We encourage you to share our driving tips for college students to prevent car accidents.

Here Are a Few Car Safety Reminders and Safety Checklists to Review Before You Start Out:

For any long road trip, you cannot count on being near your favorite repair center. If you are traveling (as most of us do) on weekends or federal and state official holidays, you cannot count on repair facilities being open or having tow services. So, it is important to have your vehicle inspected before you leave. You should make sure that

  • Your spare tire is fully inflated
  • Your jack is readily accessible
  • All engine fluids are full (including windshield washer)
  • Headlights and other lights are working

In case there is a roadside emergency, you should also have:

  • Something to kneel/lie on if you end up having to change the tire or crawl under the car
  • Foldable shovel(s)
  • Tire pressure gauge
  • Jumper cables for the car battery
  • Work gloves and safety goggles
  • Window scraper (for snow/ice in the winter and for bugs/mud/etc. in the summer)
  • Bag of sand or salt (or other traction type materials)
  • Flares
  • Duct tape (for everything)
  • Paper maps in case there is no power or no GPS service
  • At least 2 strong bright flashlights with fully charged batteries and an extra set of batteries

Stock the Car for Personal Health and Safety

Likewise, you cannot count on being near a grocery store or pharmacy. If you have car troubles or suffer some sort of other vehicle mishap, you may have to wait an hour or several hours for help. So, make sure to pack into the car first aid, personal safety, and clean-up items such as:

  • Standard first aid kit with pain relief, various sized bandages, antiseptics, etc.
  • Sunglasses and sunblock (if you end up having to walk any distance)
  • Two days (at least) of all needed prescriptions medications
  • Hand and other types of sanitizers
  • Insect repellent
  • Other types of medications for ailments such as headaches, heartburn, allergies, etc.
  • Two gallons of regular tap water (for the engine if it overheats, for clean-ups and non-drinking uses)
  • Washcloths, towels, and paper towels

In addition, for both minor car repairs and other unforeseen problems, you should bring various tools and implements such as:

  • Tweezers
  • Large scissors
  • Seat belt cutting tool
  • Small tool kit that would include different types of screwdrivers, pliers, small hammer, etc.

Also, in case of possible overnight emergency situations, bring the following:

  • Extra non-perishable food
  • Twice as much bottled water as you expect to drink
  • Blankets and pillows
  • An extra set of clothes for each person (in case of rain, mud or other mess)
  • Pen, markers and paper (for “SOS” signage if needed)
  • Extra batteries and chargers for phones and devices
  • Walking shoes/boots if not already being worn
  • Extra diapers, baby food, etc., if young children are along
  • Umbrellas/ponchos

Stay Safe When Driving to Prevent Being Involved in an Auto Accident

After you have had the car checked and after stocking the car, you must also stay safe when driving. The National Highway Travel Safety Administration offers tips for safe driving including:

  • Use your seatbelts: Seatbelt use is crucial
  • Share the Road: Be mindful of motorcycles, bicycles, and pedestrians when on city and local streets
  • Check your speed: Speeding is the number one unsafe behavior of summer drivers
  • Avoid distractions: Your kids can be the most distracting thing on a road trip; pull over to handle spills, arguments, and other problems
  • Remember safe driving techniques: Change lanes slowly, use turn signals, come to complete stops, etc.
  • Stay alert, stay awake: Switch drivers on long trips or safely pull over for short naps when needed
  • Wait it out: When the rain or thunderstorms are bad, pull over and just wait it out
  • Plan ahead: Check traffic, road construction and weather and map out your route
  • Do not drive drunk or otherwise impaired
  • Do not text and drive

Contact Our New York Motor Vehicle Accident Lawyer Today

The personal injury lawyers at the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP want you to have safe and pleasant travels this year. We hope that you will not need our services, but if you find yourself injured in a motor vehicle wreck, contact us at 516-358-6900.

If someone was driving dangerously or negligently and caused a car crash involving you or your family, our experienced New York car accident attorney can advise you on the law and help recover compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, damage to your car and other losses suffered. We offer no cost/no obligation consultations. Call today to schedule your free consultation.

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