Would you be prepared if something went wrong while you were driving? We call it “car prepping” and luckily, just a few items can make you far more prepared should you encounter trouble on the road. So check out the 10 things you should always have in your car to guarantee you’ll be ready for anything!
Source: Driving Test VIC : Driving Test VIC is an online resource to assist people preparing for all three Victorian licensing tests. The site’s resources were designed to inform and motivate – giving you the best chance to pass on your first attempt!
Car prepping 101: The basics
Whether it’s to get you started after your battery goes flat or to help out another driver in need, jumper leads are a must have in all cars.
Spare tire (with tools)
A flat tire could leave you stranded. Making sure you have an inflated spare and tools to change a flat could save you hours of time and a lot hassle. This is a basic of car prepping.
Your phone is your most valuable lifeline in an emergency. A charger could be the difference between a minor inconvenience that’s sorted in minutes and a major hassle that lasts for hours.
Glove box or console
The simple items in a first-aid kit could help a first-responder save a life in an emergency situation. Outside of that, it’s always handy to have some medical supplies nearby. Um, car prepping 101.
Glove box or back seat
Water and non-perishable food
Depending on where you breakdown, help could be a while away. Being fed and hydrated during a long wait for help will make that stretch of time a lot more comfortable.
Cash for emergencies
Money is universal and will never be declined at the most inconvenient time. Whether it’s fuel, food or a phone call for help – emergency cash can save you in a pinch.
Glove box or console
Torch (Flashlight) and spare batteries
If you need to stop at night, you’ll want to be able to see. A torch is better than your phone’s flash and phone battery is best saved for other emergencies.
Glove box or console
Blankets and spare clothes
Blankets come in handy during a wintery night in your broken down car. After changing a tire in wet weather, the spare clothes will keep you warm and dry.
Pen, paper and disposable camera
These items will allow you to collect all the details and evidence you need for insurance after an accident. They’re essentially a backup in case your phone isn’t working.
Glove box or console
Remember, real preppers know how to read a map without GPS.
Although less and less common, physical maps and street directories never lose signal or run out of battery. Keep a good old-fashioned map of your state just in case.
Side door compartment
Gif of a guy playing flute while in traffic
As you drive to and from work, running errands and shuttling the kids to school, you’ve probably seen your fair share of drivers doing really dumb things while driving. From women trying to put on mascara while doing 70 mph on the freeway, to men changing into T-shirts and shorts while behind the wheel, there is no shortage of doofus driver decisions.
Many of the dangerous decisions people make while driving share one thing in common: a smartphone. For instance, check out the following four unsafe tasks drivers will attempt with their phones while driving:
Texting while driving
There’s a reason why those gruesome commercials starring distracted and texting teens hurtling through windshields are on the air so often. Despite the warnings, people continue to text and drive. As Driving Tests notes, while you might be tempted to read or send a quick text while on the road, there are many good reasons not to take part in this risky behavior.
In addition to probably being illegal, your insurance rates will go through the roof if you get a ticket for texting and driving. And if you won’t consider your own safety, think about your passengers. Your kids, friends, spouse and co-workers are far more important than any text you could read or send on the road. To avoid temptation, it’s best to keep your smartphone in your pocket, purse, or plain out of sight.
Facebooking while driving
As a study conducted by AT&T notes, 4 in 10 smartphone users confessed to using social media while driving. Of these sites, Facebook is No. 1 in popularity, with more than a quarter of respondents admitting to using the app while behind the wheel. Similarly, around 1 in 7 drivers are tweeting on the road.
When asked why they would rather see their friends’ inane posts about what they ate for breakfast that morning instead of focusing on driving, 22 percent of drivers said they were addicted to social media. Needless to say, this is an addiction that should definitely be broken. Like texting, browsing on Facebook takes your eyes off the road and can easily result in a tragic and even fatal accident.
Snapping selfies while driving
Another common smartphone-while-driving activity is taking selfies.
The same AT&T poll found that 17 percent of people say they have done this at least once. In addition to requiring drivers to fiddle with their smartphones to set up the camera, it also means they are looking at the camera and not the road while making their best duck face, ever. Chances are good that once this unsafe selfie is taken, the driver will go one step further and post it on social media, meaning he or she is distracted from driving for even longer.
Talking on Skype and FaceTime while driving
Many states have banned using a smartphone to talk while driving unless you are using a hands-free Bluetooth device. But this does not seem to be stopping some drivers from engaging in video chat while on the road. As Digital Trends notes, 10 percent say they have used Skype or FaceTime while driving. Many people use these tools to see loved ones during their conversations, but when driving, chances are they aren’t looking at the road, which is a recipe for disaster.
Source: Social Monsters
In today’s bustling, white-collar economy, professionals (whether male or female drivers) are often at the mercy of the auto mechanic. The same can go for elderly drivers and even teen drivers. Empower yourself with the following five ways to spot a car repair scam.
If you were to pay a repair garage $2,000 to have your transmission replaced, would you really know if they replaced it with an old unit salvaged from the junkyard for $200? If you went in to have a blown headlamp changed and they found that you were overdue for an oil change, would you wonder if you really needed it? If they told you that they changed your air filter and showed you the dirty one that they took out, could you be sure it wasn’t just a prop?
Car repair scams are particularly easy to pull off because cars are complex, require specialized knowledge, and we’re generally strapped for time. You would even have a hard time ensuring fair treatment as a male driver and the mechanic assumed that you knew something about cars. If you’re a female driver you are at a further disadvantage, because mechanics tend to assume mechanical incompetence in women. You could lose thousands over a lifetime. You need to take action, and make sure that you get a fair shake.
Knowledge is power for female drivers
When it comes to finding fair treatment at an auto repair shop, an on-board diagnostics scanner can be your best friend. An OBD scanner is a device that you plug into the scanner port under the hood to be able to tap into the car’s internal computer, and every scrap of information that it has about possible areas of malfunction. When female drivers know what’s wrong with their car, it can be hard for the mechanic to try to trick them.
Get a quote first
When you see a repair garage make an unnecessarily high quote upfront, you know right away that there’s something wrong there. Use a quote search tool such as whocanfixmycar.com to request quotes from garages all over the country for the work that you have in mind. Whoever makes the most reasonable quote should go on your shortlist.
Check out a review website
Review sites such as Yelp UK attract the users of various services who want to review the way they’ve been treated. If a service center on your shortlist seems to get uniformly good reviews, it would be a great idea to give them your business.
Tell them you want your parts back
To make sure that a garage isn’t recommending unnecessary work, you want to make sure that you tell them to clear all repairs with you first. You also need to ask to be given whatever parts they replace.
Find a second opinion
An opinion from another good mechanic can be a great way to ensure that you aren’t being ripped off. At the very least, you could ask around on the Internet. That’s what the forums are there for.
It’s important to understand that mechanics do not usually possess the technical skills that they claim to have. A Which? survey, for instance, found that 98% of mechanics missed simple but vital points on cars through routine service visits, such as brake fluid level problems. Rather than be fearful of your lack of competence, then, you have every reason to be fully skeptical when you go in for a visit. You need to do what it takes to protect yourself — read up, use apps and other methods to ensure that you are treated fairly.
Author: Patrick Fox has extensive knowledge working in the second hand car trade. Recently semi-retired, he is enjoying filling up some of his spare time by writing auto based articles.
Motorcycle Safety Guide for Beginners – What You Need To Know, Wear and Do as a New Motorcycle Driver
Courtesy of the experts at: http://www.injury-solicitors.ie/
Motorcycle Safety Guide for Beginners – What You Need To Know, Wear and Do as a New Motorcycle Driver – Infographic acts as a cheat sheet to tell you, at a glance, what you need to know and remember as a new motorcycle driver. Use this sheet to check safety tips, what helmet, gear, gloves, the best footwear and even what hand signals to use!
A car accident, no matter how trivial it is, is a scary experience for everyone. But a car accident while pregnant can be even more terrifying. Worst still, the trauma the mom-to-be experiences due to the accident can also affect the unborn child, putting his/her health and life at risk.
While there are no exact data indicating how many pregnancies are lost in the U.S. every year due to motor vehicle accidents, the number is estimated to be anywhere between 1500 and 5,000 fetal deaths from such car crashes. Most miscarriage happen during the first trimester or so, making it rather difficult to get exact numbers. It is only the fetuses that die over 20-week gestational age are recorded.
However, according to Journal of the American Medical Association, “motor vehicle crashes account for four of five deaths that occur among unborn babies of pregnant women who experience trauma.”
Car Accidents and Pregnant Women
“Automobile crashes are the largest single cause of death for pregnant women and the leading cause of traumatic fetal injury mortality in the United States.” — U. S. National Library of Medicine
What makes driving while pregnant a major challenge is the fact that seat belts, which are considered to a key safety element, are not optimally designed for keeping pregnant women safe. While they work for most people, pregnant women and their unborn babies need something more (including a three-point seat belt) to avoid the trauma during a car crash.
Besides, the abdomen-to-wheel clearance decreases with the increasing in the fetuses’ gestational age. This further increases the chances of injury and trauma even if it was a minor crash. In addition, these soon-to-be moms usually have a tendency to drive in mid-seat height conditions and they prefer not to move further away from the steering in order to operate the pedals comfortably. But this habit makes driving while pregnancy even more challenging as there is less room for abdomen-to-wheel clearance.
All these factors often lead to injuries such as uterine rupture or laceration, placental abruption, and direct fetal injury etc. for pregnant occupant(s) involved in motor-vehicle crashes. The following are the most dangerous types of car crashes for a soon-to-be-mom and her unborn child:
- Side-impact, or T-bone, collisions
- Rollover accidents
- Head-on accidents
- Rear-end collisions
So if you are pregnant and somehow got yourself involved in a car accident, safety should be your first priority. Get medical attention as soon as possible, you can worry about whose fault it was and the claims later.
Things You Need to Do Soon After an Accident
As said, first priority for pregnant occupant(s) involved in car crashes is to immediately seek medical help to ensure the safety of both the mother and the unborn baby. Do this even if it is a minor fender-bender incident. The mental anguish like stress and emotional duress that result from the trauma can lead to birth complications or worse, the death of the fetus.
Call 911 and/or other emergency immediately. Some of the most common conditions pregnant women are like to feel after the accident include:
- Experience vaginal bleeding
- Feel pain in belly or pelvis
- Lose consciousness
- Experience leaking fluid from the vagina and/or feel the umbilical cord is bulging into the vagina
In case, the latter actually happens, get down to your knees immediately, keeping your buttocks higher than your head. This helps in decreasing the pressure on the umbilical cord and is likely to keep the baby safe until you receive medical attention.
Even if you are released by the medical professional, it is recommended to continue to monitor yourself for hours, days, weeks, and months for symptoms indicating a problem. The following are some of the conditions you need to be careful about:
- Swelling in your fingers or face
- Vaginal bleeding or spotting
- Pain in your shoulder areas or abdomen
- Increased vaginal discharge or a leakage of fluid
- Persistent vomiting that has nothing to do with morning sickness
- Severe, constant headaches
- A noticeable change in the baby’s movement
- Chills or a fever
- Faintness or dizziness
- Urgent and painful urination
If you experience any of these conditions even months after the car accident, immediately get medical attention to seek further treatment. It is very important to remember that even a minor accident can lead to high-risk pregnancy, premature birth, or worse, miscarriage. You may even require to visit a perinatologist or maternal-fetal specialist apart from your regular doctor. These are doctors specialized in high-risk pregnancies.
When to Hire an Attorney if You’ve Been in a Car Accident While Pregnant
Pregnant drivers are likely to have more car crashes. ~ Canadian Medical Association Journal.
Any pregnant woman involved and injured in a car crash should ideally seek legal advice from a personal injury attorney, especially if she experiences any of the conditions mentioned above. High-risk pregnancies need additional medical care and will therefore incur additional cost. In fact, their costs usually outweigh the cost of a normal pregnancy by a large extend.
A personal injury attorney will help you file your claim and also help you recoup these costs. And unfortunately, if you have had a miscarriage, a lawyer can not only help you claim compensation for the loss but also help you deal with the agonizing and heart-breaking experience with professional legal counsel.
In short, you need a personal injury attorney protect you and your unborn baby’s rights by pursuing legal action against the at-fault party. Depending upon your situation, an attorney can assist you recover financial damages to compensate for medical expenses, loss of income, and physical and emotional pain and suffering.
How to Prevent a Car Accident While Pregnant
Never trade safety for comfort when driving while pregnant. A three-point seatbelt, for example, can be often uncomfortable but it will surely keep you and your baby safe from the impact in case of a car crash.
Also, follow other safe driving tips when you are driving or riding a car while pregnant. And if you have been involved in a car crash, never take things for granted. Even if there is no visible injury, visit the emergency room soon after the accident and get yourself examined to ensure that your baby isn’t physically hurt. Remember that it is always better to be safe than sorry.
Author: Rachel Oliver is a freelance writer from Florida, who loves to write about topics like personal injury law, automobile accidents law, and medical negligence law. Currently, she is writing on behalf of a civil trial attorney, Christopher Jayson, Founder at JFSW Law. He has tremendous trial experience in cases involving automobile, truck and motorcycle accidents, inadequate security and premise liability, products liability, medical malpractice, and commercial litigation.