Lifestyle

Driving stress-free this Christmas is a two-way street

Be cautious and careful on the road this festive season.
Be cautious and careful on the road this festive season. Rob Williams

FOR many people, the Christmas holidays means packing the family into the car and taking to the road to visit relatives or that special holiday spot.

As a result, the Christmas/New period is one of the busiest times of the year on our roads.

It not only sees an increase in the number of cars but also in the number of caravans, trailers and boats travelling on the nation's highways.

If you are planning to drive this Christmas, accept the fact that there will most likely be hold-ups along the way so allow extra travelling time. It is also particularly important to be patient, especially when following caravans, boats and trailers.

Too often we see drivers taking unnecessary risks to overtake towing vehicles and putting themselves as well as other motorists at risk.

If you find yourself stuck behind a caravan, remember to stay cool, be patient and plan when you can overtake safely. A few minutes waiting until you can to safely overtake isn't long and it can be the difference between arriving at your holiday destination or not.

 

Russell White
Russell White

However, it's important to remember that consideration towards other motorists goes both ways.

If you're the one towing a caravan, boat or trailer you'll also need to be considerate to the drivers around you.

Be aware that you may be holding traffic up behind you. If traffic is banking back, you should try to find a safe place to pull over and let the traffic pass.

This will help prevent potentially risky measures being taken by those behind. It makes the roads safer and less stressful for everyone.

To ensure extended holiday travel is safe, anyone towing a caravan, trailer or boat also needs to be mindful of the basic principles of towing.

Adding a caravan or trailer changes the dynamics of your vehicle considerably and unfortunately, people can get themselves into a drama because their car isn't behaving how it normally behaves.

It is easy to forget that your car is now longer and potentially wider than it normally is.

Also much greater care is needed when overtaking. It takes much more time and distance to perform the same manoeuvre.

Longer distances must be allowed for merging, crossing intersections and braking. A bigger gap must be left ahead to allow for the reduced braking ability and for overtaking vehicles to rejoin the left lane.

The ride and handling of the combination of a vehicle and caravan or other large trailers are affected by wind, road roughness and passing vehicles to a greater extent than the vehicle alone.

Have a great time during the Christmas/New Year break but please remember to drive safely.

Russell White's experience in the driver training industry spans more than 24 years. He is widely regarded as one of Australia's leading road safety advocates. His business offers the complete range of driver training and fleet management services, visit driversafety.com.au

Topics:  cars cars news motoring



NRL takes back seat to Origin for six weeks

CENTRE STAGE: Maroons captain Cameron Smith holds the 2016 State of Origin shield aloft. The NRL is set to take a back seat for the next six weeks as Origin dominates the rugby league landscape.

Game yet to come grips with the annual drop off in interest in NRL

Top tips: how to beat a winter cold

Good Price Pharmacy Booval pharmacist Benjamin Tri and vitamins consultant Jenny Tran are ready to offer people helpful advice this cold and flu season.

We look at ways to beat the dreaded lurgy as flu season hits home

Local Partners

I was just screaming 'my baby is in the car'

Anne-Marie Priggins could have never predicted the gut-wrenching circumstances that would unfold.


Your gig guide to a great night out in Ipswich

THAT'S ENTERTAINMENT: Don't miss out on the offerings from the top spots in town.

The latest on the live music scene across the city

Paddinton Bear is coming to Ipswich

IN TOWN: Annette Kitching plays the part of Paddington Bear in The Cute Little Bear From Peru at the Incinerator Theatre.

FAVOURITE children's character set to delight in new show

What to expect at Birds of Tokyo's Ipswich gig

The band will perform at the Racehorse Hotel on Friday.

BAND member Glen Sarangapany talks music, pub grub and doing shoeys

Gladstone's MasterChef hero blown away by support

CRANE driver Pete Morgan has been bowled over by the support he has received since making his TV debut on MasterChef.

Lyn's knock-out show gets her to next round on The Voice

ONWARDS AND UPWARDS: Lyn Bowtell is through to the battle rounds on The Voice.

'It was bitter sweet to win like that'

Is this the talent you get when you limit electronics?

Cassidy Kilburn in the Get the Beat International Dance Competition.

Cassidy, 11, preparing for national dance championships

Your gig guide to a great night out in Ipswich

THAT'S ENTERTAINMENT: Don't miss out on the offerings from the top spots in town.

The latest on the live music scene across the city

Dreamworld may supersize with 'Disneyland expansion'

Dreamworld could become a “more attractive and entertaining park”.

Bush balladeer brings bruised blues to Brissie

BRIGHT FUTURE: Jordan Merrick has just released his EP, In Colour.

Singer-songwriter Jordan Merrick on his debut EP, In Colour

Ipswich lad 'Robbo' brings Studio 10 home to Nanna

REUNION: Studio 10 roving reporter David 'Robbo' Robinson broadcast the Channel 10 shows live from Ipswich with his grandmother Jan Wells.

And Eastern Heights fan plays host in the TV thrill of her life

Report reveals progress on $319m airport upgrade

Aerials of the Sunshine Coast.Jetstar plane in front of the Susnhine Coast terminal, Sunshine Coast Airport.

Over two dozen government approvals needed for airport expansion

Lost dough leaves sour taste after company collapse

Kathleen and John Mahoney from Sugar and Spice Bakery were stung after the collapse of Cantro Pty Ltd and are still owed money.

Supermarket operator collapse leaves sour taste for bakery

'Ridiculous': Council refuses renovation at heritage home

NOT FAIR: Karen Solomon of Newtown is angry with Ipswich City Council for refusing her plans to build a colonial style double car port at her Newtown home.

Council rejected development application

Council refusal of 'high density' development ends in court

Ipswich City Council first meeting with the new 2016 council.

Developer took the matter to the Queensland Planning Court

Open for inspection homes May 25-31

Check out this weekend's homes open for inspection

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!