It’s the season for Americans to hit the road, heading out on all sorts of family trips to amusement parks, campgrounds, national parks or even just to grandma and grandpa’s place.
Whatever you’re on the road for, however, unexpected situations can put both your trip and your safety at risk. Here are some unusual, but not completely uncommon, things you might face behind the wheel — and how to respond to them.
According to the National Safety Commission, a blown tire will make your car veer toward the side of the bad tire. Here’s what the organization recommends you do:
When you can’t get your car to stop accelerating, it’s easy to panic. Here are a few options that may help you regain control:
Hitting a deer – or even hitting a moose – is sure to detour your road trip. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, there are as many as 2 million collisions each year between vehicles and wildlife, causing $1 billion in damage. If you encounter an animal in the road, follow these tips from the Defenders of Wildlife:
In general, when trying to avoid road debris, the principles are similar to steering clear of wildlife — be alert at all times and don’t swerve wildly unless the danger is severe. But, there are some other things to consider:
These tips, of course, are no guarantee that you’ll navigate these conditions safely, but they may just help keep a bad situation from getting worse. One other tip that may help when facing unexpected driving hazards? Slow down! You’ll have more time to react to dangerous situations if you’re already driving at or below the speed limit.
Of course, any time you’re driving, you should also be aware of your surroundings and ready for anything. If you do experience a vehicle malfunction or collision, carefully pull to the side of the road, turn off your vehicle and do not drive any farther unless it is safe to do so. Turn on your hazard lights and call roadside assistance. Also, never get out of your car and approach a wild animal you've hit.
While these situations may seem uncommon, taking just a little time to think about how you’d respond to each one — before they happen — can make all the difference in the world.
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