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Mapfre June 21

MassDOT, MAPFRE Insurance Reminder: Summer Road Safety

Now that Massachusetts has lifted their COVID-19 restrictions and mask mandates, this summer will surely be one to remember! After a year of being cooped up and unable to see family and friends, residents are eager to get to the beaches, concerts, and cook-outs while many may take to the highways for a much-needed road trip. Especially this summer, it’s important to remember that the summer months are the deadliest when it comes to traffic crashes or accidents. Preparing and planning ahead of time before any trip is worth it to prevent breakdowns or crashes.

From June through August in the summer of 2018, there were 9,050 fatal crashes on our nation’s roadways. These months are often referred to as the “100 Deadliest Days of Summer” for teen drivers in particular, who are more susceptible to distracted driving and not having their vehicles properly checked. Before hitting the road this summer, remember the three most important factors when driving: children and teen safety, checking and stocking your vehicle, and always staying alert.

The most common reasons for breakdowns during these months are due to flat tires, overheating, and dead batteries. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration offers a checklist of items and things to be aware of to be sure your vehicle is in top shape for the summer:

  • Stock your vehicle with necessary items in case of a breakdown. This includes chargers, flashlights, jumper cables, tire jack, and water, just to name a few.
  • Check your vehicle for any recalls and stay up to date on its inspections. Ensure your car’s batteries are fully charged, all lights are working, and fluid levels are where they should be.
  • Be aware of your tire pressure and check your tires at least once a month for any uneven wear.

With school out for the summer, stay attentive of your surroundings as more children will be outside during these months. Before you back out of a driveway or parking spot, prevent backovers by walking around your vehicle to check for children running and playing. Also, remember to be aware of any blind zones your vehicle may have. Because of blind zones, large vehicles, trucks, SUVs, RVs, and vans are more likely than cars to be involved in backovers.

Before any drive, buckle-up and have every passenger do the same. Any child passenger should be in age- and size-appropriate car seats, booster seats, or seat belts. Remember to avoid distracted driving at all times. Distracted driving is the number one cause of traffic crashes and can easily be prevented. Don’t text or drive distracted, obey posted speed limits, and always drive sober. Be sure to teach your teen to do the same. It’s going to feel like the best summer ever, be sure it is a safe one too!

Even the safest of drivers can find themselves in need of assistance, which is why the MassDOT Highway Assistance Program sponsored by MAPFRE Insurance is here to help with fixing minor mechanical problems, flat tires, fuel shortages, and emergency situations. The Highway Assistance Program drivers monitor some of the state’s busiest highways and turnpikes around Metro Boston, Worcester, Springfield and Cape Cod (seasonal). The Highway Assistance Patrol covers 13 major state roadways and interstates, the Emergency Service Patrol covers the Mass Pike (I-90) from New York to Boston and the Incident Response Operators cover the Metropolitan Highway System and tunnels. The Highway Assistance Patrol is in service Monday–Friday between the hours of 6 a.m.–10 a.m. and 3 p.m.–7 p.m. During holidays, there are extended routes in heavy traffic areas. On I-90, and in Boston’s tunnel system, assistance is provided 24 hours per day, 7 days a week.

 

Written By

Patrick McDonald, CPCU

CEO, Northeast Region

MAPFRE Insurance

Written By:

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