Road safety charity the IAM is offering weekly motoring tips from Britain's top advanced driver, Peter Rodger. This week, he is advising you on safely making your journey home at Christmas:
- Prepare your vehicle beforehand: check tyre pressure, top up your washer fluid and make sure all your lights are working.
- Plan your journey by checking the weather conditions both the start and end locations of your journey. Check updates on the radio during your journey, and take a map so you can re-route if necessary.
- Share the driving on long journeys, as fatigue is likely to set in.
- Take regular breaks, ideally every two hours or less.
- Pack enough food, books and games to keep the kids occupied.
- Let someone at home know what time you expect to arrive.
- Watch out for other road users - give them plenty of room and consideration.
- In case the worst happens, ensure that you have plenty of fuel. Pack an emergency kit of spare clothes, a shovel, water, food, an ice scraper, a reflective jacket and a fully charged mobile phone with your breakdown provider's details programmed in. It is also a good idea to carry with you any regular medication you take as your journey may take longer than planned.
Rodger said: "The last thing you need at Christmas is to be caught out and held up on your way to see the loved ones. Take the time to prepare and plan your journey from start to finish to drive your way to festive harmony."
To help drivers stay safe this winter, the IAM has launched a new website, drivingadvice.org.uk, with traffic updates, weather forecasts and tips on how to drive safely in winter.
Tips cover rain, snow, ice, fog and wind – everything you can expect in a typically unpredictable British winter. Check it out before you travel.