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Summer Driving Tips on the Highway

Summer Driving Tips on the Highway

Summer Driving Tips on the Highway

Every summer people crowd onto the highways to get away from it all.   Knowing a few summer driving tips can prevent a lot of headaches as you zoom across familiar highways or explore beautiful unknown roads this month. With summer now more than half over and August well into its third week, you can feel the pulse of Canadians speeding up.  "HOW many more weeks do we have left to enjoy summer?" we all mentally ask ourselves, as we squash and cram our portable barbeques, backpacks, sleeping bags, bathing suits, towels, umbrellas, sunscreen products, extra clothes, rain gear, boomboxes, kids' toys, frozen hamburgers and coolers into our collective trunks and set out one last time on the road. "After all," we think, "we only get one last chance to do this all together, don't we?" Then Labour Day clamps down on us all, putting the kids back in school, and putting a stop to all the craziness.

Everybody is crazier in summer. We all know it, but it doesn't stop us from all piling onto the highways together. It's part of the natural beauty of Alberta and our shared frenzy to enjoy it that has us all dialing up our determination to have one last road trip. So as you pack up and hit the road this summer, think about these summer driving tips on the highway that can make your trip one of the most memorable ones you've ever had.

The Primary Summer Driving Tip is to Observe the Speed Limit on the Highway

Driving over the speed limit on highways is the most common source of traffic tickets during the summer season. Speeding on the highway, even if you are keeping up with other drivers who are driving well beyond 30 km over the speed limit, can get you a ticket that could set you back a paycheque or two. We all see the extra law enforcement vehicles unobtrusively parked where they think we can't see them, dotting most of the highways. So take extra care when you put pedal to the metal. Wear sandals if it helps you keep a lighter foot, and keep your eye on your speedometer as well as on the road.

Be Patient on the Highway, and Watch Out For Deer and Moose

The sheer volume of traffic on highways in summer months is cause for anyone's concern. But perhaps the most concern of all can be felt for the unsuspecting deer and moose that cross the highways at inopportune times - and for the people in the cars that they unfortunately can run into.

As you exercise extra care and patience this summer when driving, watch out for the signs warning of wildlife in the area you are vacationing in. Maintain the speed that is posted on the highway, be mentally prepared and think of a plan of action if an animal were to dart out in front of your vehicle suddenly, and drive as defensively as you can. Make a point of watching out for glaring light, which is what is visible when your headlights reflect in an animal's shining eyes, or for flickering light, which can occur when an animal crosses in front of tail lights ahead. Familiarize yourself with the wildlife that dwell in the region, and be aware that due to the height of moose, their eyes are not at the level of car headlights and therefore will not reflect them.

Alberta RCMP Urge Drivers to Take Special Caution on the Roads This Summer

The Alberta RCMP have gone out of their way to urge drivers to drive with more caution this summer, following the very sad deaths of 75 people who were killed on roads in Central Alberta since May 15th. According to the Red Deer Advocate, RCMP Cpl Hal Turnbull of the RCMP K Division Strategic Communications in Edmonton indicated that part of enhanced RCMP efforts to keep people safer on the roads this summer include ramped up checkstops throughout the province to:

  • Check that all passengers in vehicles have their seat belts buckled
  • Ensure that all drivers obey the speed limits that are posted
  • Remind drivers to be aware of other drivers in cars, trucks, and on motorcycles
  • Remind drivers to take special care of cyclists and pedestrians

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