Summer is just around the corner in a mere two weeks. You will definitely want to hit the road with friends and family for a nice, fun road trip. However, the summer months are also a time when it’s so easy to run into a disastrous situation like an accident. Unfortunately, however, accidents happen all the time.
If you do get injured on your summer road trip, you will want to have a skilled Los Angeles auto accident lawyer on your side, fighting for your rights. The right lawyer can help you to get started on your claim and handle negotiations with the insurance company and, if necessary, go to litigation.
Before you hit the road, make sure you know all about how to keep safe with these summer driving tips.
Check for Recalls
First and foremost, you may want to see the latest updates on vehicle recalls to see whether your vehicle or any of its parts have been affected. You can do this by checking with the NHTSA recall database. Enter your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to see if the specific make and model of your car has been recalled or if there was a part that was recalled within the last 15 years.
Have Your Vehicle Serviced
You should bring your car to the mechanic to have regular maintenance performed on it. Get an oil change, have someone check the battery, brakes, air conditioning, and anything else that may require a routine checkup prior to a road trip. Remember, you need your vehicle to be in tip-top condition for your travels, especially if you plan on driving long distances.
Consider a Vehicle Safety Checklist
Even if you take the best possible care of your car, it’s absolutely essential to do a few safety checks before any road trip. The following things should be checked out to ensure your safety and that of anyone traveling with you:
- Air conditioning: Check your vehicle’s air conditioning unit and make sure it’s working properly. If it isn’t, it can really cause problems once you hit the road during the summer. The weather will be hotter, so you will need to stay cool. Older people, children, individuals with certain health conditions, and pets all require a cool vehicle on long summer road trips.
- Cooling system: Your cooling system requires antifreeze in order to properly function. Just as important, your radiator needs water as well. The coolant should be changed if it appears rusty, clear in color, or has debris floating in it. If your coolant appears oily or thick like sludge, you should immediately take your car to the mechanic.
- Fluid levels: Your vehicle’s fluid levels should be regularly checked. Your oil should be changed every few months, especially before a long road trip. It’s also important to check out your brake fluid, windshield cleaner, transmission, and clutch. If you spot any signs of fluid leaking from your car, it should be serviced sooner rather than later.
- Belts and hoses: Check under the vehicle’s hood and take a look at the belts and hoses to ensure there are no cuts, cracks, or bulges. During the hotter days of summer, these items can overheat, so it’s a good idea to have them replaced prior to hitting the road for a vacation. You should also check the connections in the belts and hoses to ensure that they are secure.
- Wiper blades: Your windshield wipers do a lot of heavy work in keeping the rain off your car’s windshield. As a result, the wiper blade might need replacing, especially since they’re susceptible to damage from the heat of summer. Check for wear and tear on them and replace them if necessary.
- Check floor mats: Check the floor mats in the vehicle, especially the one on the floor of the driver’s seat. Improperly sized and/or old mats can result in problems such as difficulty in using the brake or gas pedal, which can raise the risk of a crash occurring.
- Lights: Make sure all the lights are in proper working condition. Lights malfunctioning can result in lower visibility.
- Emergency roadside kit: Always ensure that your emergency roadside kit is fully stocked just in time for your summer road trip. Your kit should include items such as a first aid kit, flashlight, cell phone and charger, jumper cables, tire pressure gauge, flares and white flag, work gloves, jack, water, paper towels, non-perishable food, maps, extra windshield washer fluid, towels, and emergency blankets.
- Tires: Check your vehicle’s tires and ensure that they still have good treads along with correct air pressure levels.
Always, Always Buckle Up
Above all else, everyone in your car should keep their seatbelt on as long as the vehicle is in motion. It will keep you safer in the event of an accident. Even in the backseat, seatbelts should be fastened.
If you reside in California and have been involved in a collision while on the road, you need an auto accident attorney to assist you in your personal injury case. Contact a knowledgeable Los Angeles auto accident lawyer at Lalezary Law Firm for a free consultation.