Drive in the Rain? Use Your Brain.

Driving in the Rain

Unlike the popular 80’s song Blame it On the Rain, don’t. What did rain ever do to you besides water your garden and kind-of wash your car?? Though rain is blamed for a gazillion accidents each year, most of these fender-benders are preventable and not the rain’s fault at all. Rather, the true culprits of foul-weather flip-overs are un-brainy drivers failing to concede that they need to save their normal driving habits for another un-rainy day.

Here are a handful of wet-road-reminders for those days when the rain won’t go away:

  • Be very cautious when it first rains after a period of dry weather. Oil and grease gradually build up on the road and when it rainfall hits, your joyful ride can instantly turn into a not so fun slip and slide.
  • As they say, “When it rains, bad traffic pours.” You know traffic will be congested in inclement weather, so give yourself a few extra minutes to arrive safely to your destination.
  • Tailgating, is bad enough. Tailgating when the roads are slick? That’s just plain idiotic. Give yourself bigger space cushions with the cars ahead of you so you have more time to stop safely. Braking by slamming on the brake pedal will make your already rainy day even rainier.
  • Go ahead, show off! Yes, we want you to draw attention to yourself, really!! When it’s raining, everyone’s visibility is hampered. Remember to turn your headlights on (low beams please) and keep your windows defogged. Also, be on the lookout for cars without lights on, pedestrians, and other road hazards that might get lost in the rainy shuffle.
  • Unless you drive a hovercraft, the inner lanes of the road are probably your best bet. Most roads slope downward toward the curb where you’ll find those deep, hard to avoid puddles.
  • You cruise, you lose. If you hydroplane while using cruise control, your car may suddenly and abruptly speed up. Good luck to you When your tires return to the wet road at an accelerated speed. Hopefully you remembered to wear your seatbelt.
  • If your car does start to hydroplane, don’t freak out: jerking the wheel or hitting the brakes are BAD ideas! Instead, ease your foot off the gas and hold the steering wheel firmly until your car regains traction with the road.

What did we learn? Driving conditions will be less than ideal as long as raindrops keep falling on your hood. If you can, stay off the streets when the weather takes a turn for the wet. If you have places to go and people you must see, just remember that not all driving situations were created equal, and when it comes to wet roads, you need to carry yourself with a little extra common sense!

Distracted Kids Don’t Distract You

How To Survive A Mommy Road Trip

Kids Gone Wild Can Be a Real Distraction

Although it is fact that new moms are among the top most distracted drivers in the country, it is also true that mothers of multiple children can become just as distracted as new moms, especially when it comes down to those road trips. Of course the idea of family vacays are wonderful, but let’s face it, they can be extremely long, and yes while family bonding time is the best time, it may not always go as smoothly as you dreamed it to be. You’re not alone. Mommies, we’ve all been there before. The destination ahead of you, while the kids bicker behind. The big debate: One Direction vs. The Wanted. Your six-year old asks repeatedly in the most intonation voice, “Are We There Yet?” while the youngest one screams in sheer agony for that 2pm feeding. The worst part, 90 miles left to the next rest stop. Enough to make any parent rethink the idea.

However, all can go really well if you take a few extra moments and develop a plan that will lessen your stress, causing you to focus more on the road. So for starters, make a checklist. Hey most of us have a ‘To Do List’ on a daily basis, so why not make one for the road? Aside from your luggage, maps and/or GPS, don’t forget your emergency car kit, which can come in handy in the event of the unfortunate. But, when traveling with children, you’ll want to make sure that you have plenty of distractions to keep them entertained while you navigate through the open roads. Snacks and beverages are a must! Hungry kids aren’t the happiest kids. Growling bellies lead to complaints and whines, which lead to growling mommies. Especially with little ones under the age of five, prepare bottles, treats and schedule your rest stops according to feedings and diaper changes. No one, including baby wants to be around if you don’t. Trust me!

Furthermore, one of the absolute most important things you need to have on your road trip is…entertainment! A bored child will surely let you know, and without anything to do, they will begin to ask you every question under the sun, making a one-hour trip seem like a cross country adventure. However, when packing games for the road, make sure the activities you bring along don’t create so much noise that your children distract and hinder the driver.

So we thought we’d share with you five of our favorite travel games to keep your little ones entertained…and you alert. Happy Traveling!

Rock, Paper, Scissor: a classic game for all ages, but most importantly, doesn’t require any board games or small pieces to pack. Your hands are all you need to enjoy hours of fun!

Memory: choose a name that begins with any letter of the alphabet. The next player has to repeat the previous name, followed by a new name of choice, beginning with the same letter, and so on to the next player. With so many topics and letters to choose from, you could literally spend the entire trip engulfed in this game.

I Spy: who doesn’t love a good game of I Spy? One person chooses an object around them. He or she then gives the other people in the car a clue by saying: “I spy with my little eye, something…” until the object is named. One of the best travel games ever!

Spelling Bee: parents can get involved in this one too! Not only will your child have a fun time spelling, but they will also enjoy learning new words in the process.

The Banana Game: a pretty simple game, but tons of fun! The color yellow is a rarity in vehicles, so be the first person to spot a passing yellow automobile. The more you see, the more points you’ll receive. The person with the most points wins.

Taking some of the ‘ick’ out of Ticket

No time to read a long-winded BLOnG? Welcome to the Three-Second-Stop mini-Blog.

Today’s Three Seconds: Traffic Ticket Control

Speeding Ticket3 Second StopTraffic Tickets: You dread them. There’s the humiliation of being pulled over, the steep ticket fine, your tarnished driving record, and increased car insurance rates. Fortunately, most states will allow you to take a Defensive Driving or Traffic School class to ‘hide’ your citation from the public and your insurance company, saving your insurance rates from skyrocketing. Not necessarily a reason to celebrate, but fixing your ticket will no doubt alleviate some of the financial burden of getting pulled over.

Silly Drivers, School Zones Are For Kids

Slow Down in School Zones

When kids are present, School Zones are Slow Zones. Here’s some simple advice to keep the kids, and your driving record, safe:

  • When entering a marked school zone, your foot should be covering the brake pedal and your eyes scanning the road. You know how kids can be: they’ll jump out of nowhere and run across the street when you least expect it.
  • Regardless if it’s a school day or not, when children are in sight, school zones require you to follow the posted 25mph or slower speed limit. For example, if it’s a Saturday night at 10pm and you are in a school zone when kids are present (maybe a school dance just let out), you still need to adjust your speed and obey the slower school zone speed limit.

When you slow down for children, you not only make yourself a safe driver, you also help alert other unaware drivers who may not see the obstacles you see. When they see you slowing down, their driving intuition will kick in and they will follow your safe-driving lead.