Being vigilant on the roads
Summer is a time of relaxing, going to holiday homes, camping and soaking up the sun, but staying safe on the road as you head to those destinations has never been more important. Travelling on New Zealand roads during the festive season carry higher risks meaning you have to be more alert and extra vigilant. There are more vehicles on the road including those travellers who are unfamiliar with our roads, people driving longer hours, increased stress, drink-drivers and people who are fatigued, all these are potential for accidents. You can make a number of choices to increase your safety on your holiday journey. New Zealand Transport Agency has compiled a list of steps you can take to keep you and your family safe this summer. Take a little time to make sure you and your vehicle are safe before hitting the road. Allow plenty of time – make the journey part of the holiday. Schedule regular rest stops. Drive to the conditions. Watch out for fatigue. Check your trailers and caravans Check all towing attachments and make sure the couplings are compatible. Also remember to check the safety chain, trailer lights, tyres and brakes. Remember, if you’re towing a trailer, your maximum speed limit on the open road is 90km/h. Keep left and pull over when it is safe to let other vehicles pass. Load heavy objects evenly over all of the axles. Be courteous - let others merge into traffic and indicate before turning or changing lanes. Keep left unless passing. If you’re a slower driver, pull over when you can to let others pass. Be patient and don’t be provoked by other drivers’ aggressive behaviour. Keep an eye out for cyclists and other road users. Give them plenty of space. Buckle up Children under five must be properly restrained by an approved child restraint suitable to their size and weight. Remember you’re sharing the road Always keep a safe following distance between yourself and the vehicle in front. If you’re cycling or motorcycling, make sure you’re visible and wearing proper protective gear. Keep an eye out for children
Before you travel: Have your vehicle checked. Most garages offer safety checks for tyre tread and pressure, lights, brakes, cooling systems and other components. Check that your warrant of fitness and vehicle licence are up to date. When packing your vehicle, make sure everything is securely stowed.