It's been a long, cruel winter and a late spring in this neck of the woods. In a few days, families will be hitting the roads to visit extended family for Easter dinner and reunions. For many, it will be their first real road trip of the year. Bear this in mind when you join the exodus to Grandma's House this busy weekend.
Drive defensively. Plan Ahead. Get yourself a little self help before the rubber hits the road.
Why the worry? The OPP warn us that serious road collisions are on the rise. The data is in from one of our last busy road seasons. Last Labour Day Long Weekend 2016 was the deadliest on Ontario highways in 20 years (GlobalNews). Just as alarming, the OPP reported that distracted driving-related deaths would double the number of impaired-driving related deaths by the end of the season. 2 to 1 over drunk driving is a frightening truth and a chilling legacy left by smart phones.
What Can We Do to Protect Ourselves on the Roads?
- Drop the Phone and Just Drive. That call or text can wait until you reach your destination.
- Catch the Forecast Before You Roll. Get up to date weather information and road forecasts before you get in the car. Know what you are driving into and, if possible, plan your drive to miss the worst of the bad weather.
- Check Your Car. Top up your washer fluid. Check the oil. Check the tires. Check your lights.
- Be Alert. The mild Spring weather encourages everyone and everything to get out and move. Watch for children and pedestrians on the road. Be aware that seniors and dog walkers may need more time to cross busy roads and intersections. Consciously share the road with cyclists. Know that wildlife will be crossing roads. Deer are abundant in this area. And if you see one deer starting across the road, know that there are two, three or four more right behind. Pay attention to deer crossing signs and be prepared to stop.
- Pack Your Patience. Everyone has the same idea and our roads get jammed on Long Weekends. Getting angry with strangers on the road, or getting short with family in the car, just distracts everyone from safe driving.
Drive safe and arrive alive to family and friends this Easter Long Weekend.
Drive Safe This Easter Weekend
The Easter Long Weekend will mark the first road trip of the year for many in Ontario. Driving and coping skills will be rusty. Drive defensively and plan ahead for what you may encounter on our busy roads.