The winter holidays are finally here, along with half a million new visitors headed for the Sunshine State.
Are you prepared?
As you approach crowded roadways and parking lots this season, it’s important to minimize risk whenever possible. And with a little preparation and mindfulness, you’ll hopefully be able to maneuver just fine around town; despite all of the seasonal out-of-state drivers and numerous holiday festivities.
So how do you make sharing the roads with both local and visiting out-of-state drivers more joyful and most importantly safer?
Below are a few suggestions to help you deal with the added traffic and numerous visitors this season brings.
The winter holiday traffic:
It may not be completely unavoidable, but there are ways to help minimize your risk.
Give yourself extra time
It is never a good idea to be in a rush; however, even less so during this crowded season. If at all possible, allocate more time than you normally would, even for your routine errands. Otherwise, you may find yourself speeding and perhaps multi-tasking while on the road.
Park near an exit
Parking closer to your destination may not be your best bet. For example, mall parking can be exhausting as you circle around to find that perfect spot. Consider parking away from the congestion, making it easier to leave when you’re done shopping.
Watch out for walkers
Be mindful anyone can step around your vehicle at any time, especially in stop and go traffic. Keep a watchful eye and always give pedestrians the right of way.
Year round residents know the winter season brings many new visitors to Florida. The following tips may help you to navigate through snowbird season.
Don’t follow too closely
More than a third of car accidents are rear-end collisions, according to the Information Institute. Leaving several car lengths between cars will help avoid this. That way when snowbirds surprise you by slamming on their brakes, you’ll be far enough away to remain unaffected.
Some winter visitors may be completely new to driving in our cities and unfamiliar with our roadways. Many are older and may have reduced reaction times or vision problems. Bring patience to your driving experience these holidays, as it may very well be needed.
Watch out for blind spots, and be especially cautious when driving near RV’s (just as you would be with large trucks.) If you can’t see an approaching vehicle in your mirrors, chances are they can’t see you either. Make sure you don’t stay in another cars’ blind spot.
For more information, see this month’s AAA Living.
Photo courtesy of Pexels