The start of school has snuck up on me this year. The start of rain, sweater weather, and Starbucks Pumpkin Spice lattes are upon us. Some of you may already be in the swing of things. For my house, it’s just around the corner. While I love this time of year, it’s also sad to let go of summer. Mostly the warm, late nights and no traffic on weekday mornings. To ensure a smooth transition, I wanted to share a few tips to make your September is slightly less stressful:
Give yourself plenty of time. Now that everyone is back to school remember your commute will be longer. Practice going to bed earlier a few weeks (or even days) before and you’ll be better off for the first day back to school. You’ll have getting up to an alarm, making early breakfast, packing alunch(es), and hitting the road on time an easy task if you practice the drill a few times before hand.
Watch out for Pedestrians. The statistics on children in motor vehicle related accidents is staggering when it comes to pedestrians. Remember that this time of year more children are out and about walking to school. Let’s face it, even if you teach your children well, they all get distracted, they’re excited for school too, and accidents happen. It’s good to be aware of more pedestrians (and bicyclists) so you’re on the lookout for them and you can stop potential catastrophes before they happen.
Familiarize Yourself with School Zones; Speeds & Times too. This is also helpful for watching out for pedestrians. Generally, more school kids will be crossing in school zone areas. Since all school zone crossings are different as far as days, times, type of signs, it really helps to familiarize yourself with the ones you’ll be driving through. Sometimes the rules only apply when the sign flashes, some apply only during peak hours, some apply only on “school” days, and the list goes on. Getting familiar with the school zones in your area might save you an accident and also a pricey ticket. Yikes!
Safely Commute with Kids: Ah, the time of years the kiddos fight over who gets the best seat in the car; shotgun. Correct Answer: Mom or dad’s briefcase. The backseat is the safest place for kids to sit, for a looooonnngg time. So if they’re not driving themselves yet, you may want to look into the specific height, weight, and state specific restrictions in your area. It may also help to keep any kid-related messes relegated to the backseat.
Be a driver role model. I thought this was an interesting and important tidbit when I read it on the safercar.gov website. As with many lessons in life, you are your child’s biggest role model. Kids learn a LOT from their parents’ example. So if you blow through crosswalks, flip off bus drivers, and speed through school zones you can expect the same from your teen driver… not to mention a steep hike in car insurance. A little thing called, Karma comes to mind here.
Make sure Your Car is Safe When was the last time you had any maintenance done on your daily driver? Checked your tires? Changed the oil? Do you have functioning wiper blades? ‘nough Said. Make sure your car will safely get the fam from point A to point B. Remember, the weather is changing too so your car will have to handle puddles, dirty windshields, ice, etc.
Enjoy learning, new friends, holidays, and pumpkin lattes!
New Age Auto Repair