Remote or regional roads can present some of the highest risks when it comes to driving. Here are 6 safe driving tips on country roads to help keep you safe!
Surfing at beach towns, fishing along the river, camping in the middle of nowhere – a country road trip is the ultimate summer experience! But before you arrive, you’ve got to get there, so it pays to know some of the best safe driving tips on country roads.
So, prior to heading about, make sure you read and remember these safe driving tips on country roads to dramatically decrease the chances of something ruining your journey.
1. Check the conditions
What kind of road will I be driving on? What will the weather be like? Is my car up for the long drive? These are the kind of questions you should be asking, and the internet will have the answers. A quick check on any map applications will have pictures and information about the roads. Keep yourself up-to-date on the weather report and look out on emergency service websites for any warnings, especially in relation to fire conditions.
2. Check your car
Pay attention to the level of windscreen, coolant, break and power steering fluids, as well as the oil level. After that, it’s best to bring your car to a petrol station that has an air compressor. There you’ll be able to check each tyre’s air pressure (not forgetting about the spare). More detailed guides are available, so do a quick search to make sure you’re doing everything correctly! If you’re going away for more than a day-trip, it’s best to get your car quickly checked by a licenced mechanic.
3. Prepare for the trip
Bring adequate water and food, as well as charged mobiles and a way to charge them in the car. If your journey will take you deep into the outback, bringing spare petrol and oil is also a must.
4. Plan stops
Have a look at your route online and make a note of towns with public facilities, such as water taps, bathrooms and picnic areas. Cafes are also great if you want to relax and unwind for a bit, and the coffee will help you stay alert. Don’t drive for longer than 2 hours at a time.
5. Drive safely
Country roads can be long and seemingly dull and unending, but never underestimate them. Often, we can get used to the speed we’re driving at and suddenly 110 km/ph doesn’t feel so fast anymore. However, many country roads weren’t designed to be driven on at such speeds. Even if the speed limit says you can go fast, you should still be constantly assessing each part of the road and matching your speed accordingly. Pull over for a break whenever you start to feel bored, sleepy or agitated. Even if you feel good, stop for a break every 2 hours. Overtake safely and take your time and always keep an eye out for potholes and obstacles on the road.
6. Be aware of wildlife
Lastly, stay alert for signs of wildlife – especially kangaroos and especially at dusk or night. Australian animals cross roads freely in the countryside, and often panic when they see or hear a car approaching. Humans likewise panic if they see an animal in front of their car and sometimes swerve off the road to avoid it. Keep your brake foot ready, drop your speed and fight the urge to swerve instead of break. At night, drop your speed dramatically and turn your high beams on. Wildlife can do huge amounts of damage to your car, and driving off the road can be fatal – so never be unprepared!
At Corporate Driver Training Australia, we believe that road safety is something that needs regular attention and training. Contact us today to find out more about our corporate driver training courses.