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Road safety tips for your Easter weekend trips

With the Easter long weekend about to start, many of us will be taking a road trip to visit friends and loved ones or going on a well-deserved vacation.

This period is a hectic time on South Africa’s roads – with holiday traffic, long distance travelling, and exhaustion increases the risk of stress and anxiety when moving cross-country. However, holidaymakers need to take extra care and be mindful of other road users to ensure we all arrive at our destinations safely.

“Technology is an incredibly useful safety tool,” says Grant Fraser, Group Managing Director of Netstar, a subsidiary of Altron. “We encourage all drivers to use it wherever possible to protect themselves, their loved ones, and other road users, especially during long weekends such as Easter.”

As a company committed to protecting and connecting South African road users, Netstar suggests the following road-safety recommendations to help you have a safe journey.

Be patient and stay alert – you will inevitably encounter heavy, slow-moving traffic somewhere on your journey. Stay calm, slow down, and don’t lose your temper. Remember that sharing the road safely requires every road user to be conscious of one another. Each motorist should be familiar with the needs of every road user, including pedestrians, heavy vehicles, even aggressive drivers.

Be extra careful at night – plan your trip so you minimise the time you spend driving at night. All driving risks are amplified in the dark, so we need to take even greater safety precautions. Drive slower, keep a greater following distance, and rest and rotate driving more regularly to avoid fatigue.

Slow down – with more trucks on the road, speeding becomes even more dangerous. Never speed around a blind corner. You may come upon a truck or other vehicle driving extremely slowly. If you’re driving too fast, you risk a rear-end collision.

Watch the weather – check the forecast on your weather app before you leave and adjust your journey accordingly. If you’re caught in a rainstorm, drive extremely slowly, and take a rest break as soon as it is safe to do so.

Make sure your car is roadworthy – before going on a long trip, have your vehicle checked at a service centre. Ensure your tyres have enough tread and that your brakes and shock absorbers are in good working order.

Focus on your driving – one of the leading causes of road accidents is distracted driving. Texting or using your phone while driving makes you 23% more likely to be involved in an accident. Put your phone away and avoid eating or drinking while driving. Opening food packaging is a huge distraction that can have disastrous consequences.

Get connected – get a vehicle tracking unit and subscribe to an emergency-response service like Netstar Companion. If you get into trouble on the road, you will be able to call an armed-response officer or emergency medical services to your location with a tap of your smartphone.

Netstar is a proud sponsor of Arrive Alive online.

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