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Fall Safety Tips

Sep 23, 2020

Toyota van driving through fall foliage the back roads of Northern Virginia.

Now that fall has arrived, it is time to shift gears on driving safety.

Fall brings its own set of hazards that can result in damage or injury if you're inattentive when behind the wheel.

Here are a few things that require special attention in this season:

1. Kids

Stay wary in school zones not only for kids walking, but also for young, inexperienced drivers leaving the premises and picking up friends or siblings.

2. Critters

You're 3.5 times as likely to hit an animal, especially a deer, in November as at any other time of the year, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says. Deer are likely to be mating in November, and that's why you see more of them.

3. Leaves

As the foliage falls and winds blow, leaves litter the road.

They can cause motorists to park farther from the curb to accommodate piles, create puddles as they block drainage, hide potholes and pavement markings. 

It's important to make sure you have plenty of stopping distance to avoid a rear-ending vehicles ahead of you.

4. Tires

Tires perform better on rainy surfaces if they have enough tread. And they stop faster and steer better on dry ones.

Also, proper tire pressure helps keep you rolling smoothly and safely. Expect your tires to drop at least 1 pound per square inch (PSI) of pressure each month, no matter the weather.

5. Dampness

We think of big puddles as dangerous — and they are — because front wheels can float and you can lose steering, also known as hydroplaning. 

6. Glare

The blinding distraction of sun glare waxes as summer wanes.

Have your sunglasses handy. Don't look directly into the lights of oncoming traffic when you drive at night.

And keep your windshield clear, so dirt streaks don't contribute to the glare.

7. Fog and Frost

When temperatures have been cold enough that moisture on the road has turned to ice in spots, slow down.

Pay special attention to bridges and overpasses.


Buckle Up.. Every Time!

A seat belt is your best defense against an impaired or distracted driver. 

Did you know?

  • Three out of four fatal crashes occur within 25 miles of the victim's home?
  • Most crashes that cause death or injury occur at speeds below 40 MPH?
  • Nearly 20% of Virginia drivers do not wear their seat belts?

Using a handheld device while driving is the leading cause of distraction-related crashes.

Each day, 9 people are killed and over 1,000 are injured in crashes involving distracted driving.


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