• Get Your Boat Trailer Ready for a Safe Season

    When warm-weather recreation is calling your name, it’s hard not to answer. Especially if you have a boat sitting in your driveway. But, before you hit the highway with that watercraft in tow, we’ve put together a quick boat trailer inspection checklist to help you and your family get to the lake or river safely.

  • How to Have a Happy, Safe Summer Road Trip

    So you’re hitting the road for your favorite campsite, fishing hole, theme park or beach rental. Here are 17 summer driving reminders to keep you, your passengers and fellow travelers safer on highways and byways.

    • Make sure your vehicle is safe and road-ready with this checklist.
    • Buckle up every time.
    • Put kids 13 and younger in the back seat. No exceptions.
    • Inflate tires properly. Proper inflation is important for safety and can save you up to 9 cents per gallon through better fuel efficiency.
    • If you’re hauling, use a safety chain for trailers and inspect your hitch whenever you stop.
    • Check blind zones before backing up. Trucks, SUVs, RVs and vans are more likely than cars to be involved in backovers.

    Side mirror with reflection

    • Remember to add clearance for trailers, campers, bike racks and roof racks. It’s easy to forget your extra height or length.
    • Add following distance. A fully loaded vehicle needs more stopping time.
    • Add extra following distance for motorcycles. They can stop much quicker, in shorter distances.
    • Slow down if there’s a sudden cloudburst to avoid hydroplaning.
    • Never leave kids or animals in an unattended car, even with windows down or A/C on.
    • Lock your vehicle when exiting.
    • Don’t drive distracted. Don’t text or check your phone. Check out cell phone laws by state.
    • Watch for pedestrians and cyclists on the shoulder. Warm weather means there are more sharing the road.

    Cyclist on road shoulder

    • Before driving, don’t take medications, alcohol or drugs that will impair you.
    • Pull over if you get drowsy.
    • If you get stranded without a roadside assistance policy, call an on-demand roadside service.
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  • Do You Know How to Drive If Your Tire Goes Flat?

    When a tire goes flat or completely comes apart while you’re driving at highway speed, you can catch even the most experienced driver off guard.

    Here’s what to do if it happens to you, along with a checklist for preventing flats.

    Survive a Flat Tire on the Road

    How Can You Prevent Flat Tires?

    Avoid tire failure by following these easy tips.

    1. Check tire pressure monthly, including the spare.

    2. Slow down if you have to drive over a pothole or other object in the road.

    3. Don’t run over curbs or other foreign objects in the roadway, and try not to hit or rub the curb when parking.

    4. Inspect tires for uneven wear patterns on the tread, cracks, foreign objects, or other signs of wear or trauma.

    5. Remove any stones, bits of glass or other foreign objects wedged in the tread.

    6. Make sure your tire valves have caps.

    7. When carrying heavy loads, you should be extra careful about proper tire pressure. Overloading and low tire pressure can cause a tire to overheat, leading to tire failure.

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