Many Wisconsin families are going to be packing up and driving out of town for vacation this summer. If you’re one of them, we hope you enjoy your trip! And Natasha Misra Law is here with some simple car packing tips you can use to pack up safely and make sure your trip goes off without a hitch.
As a rule, it’s best to pack heavy items first, such as suitcases, coolers full of food and ice, and plastic tote boxes. Place these items closer to the center of the trunk. Then, pack lighter items around these heavy items – things like garment bags and shoe bags, groceries, and other such items.
This helps ensure the weight of your car is distributed evenly, which reduces the risk of tipping in an accident, and keeps the car stable.
Also, avoid packing things too high. Items can obstruct the drivers’ vision through the rear-view mirror. Under sudden braking, items packed up high could be thrown forward, striking anyone sitting in the back seat.
If you have a rooftop cargo container, a bike rack, or a rear storage rack for your car, make sure it’s properly installed and secured.
Remember, external cargo racks are going to be blown around by wind speeds in excess of 75 mph. Make sure they’re completely secure before setting out. You should also make sure that you’re not exceeding the manufacturer’s load limits for cargo racks.
If you’re towing a trailer, make sure it’s in good overall condition, hitches up to your car or truck properly, has functioning lights, and has fully inflated tires. Use safety chains to attach it to your hitch, and check it periodically throughout your trip to make sure everything looks good.
For that matter, you also should make sure your car is in good shape with properly inflated tires that have plenty of tread life left, topped-up fluids, and no mechanical issues that could interfere with your trip. A quick trip to the mechanic may be in order!
Stuffing your car full of suitcases and luggage – and additional family members – means that you’ll be adding quite a bit of weight to your vehicle. If your car is packed to the brim, you could add hundreds of pounds to its weight.
This will affect how your car handles. It will take longer to stop and to accelerate, and turns may also feel a bit different. Keep this in mind, and drive accordingly. You also should consider reducing how much stuff you bring to lighten the load.
We hope these tips have helped you prepare for your next road trip. And remember, if you need a Milwaukee car accident attorney, Natasha Misra Law is always here for you. Contact us online or call us at 414-246-9707 to discuss your situation and get a free case review.
More cars than ever have feature-rich, complex “infotainment” systems to control GPS, set up radio or music playback, make Bluetooth calls via your cell phone, and much more.
But while these can be really useful, they can also cause dangerous distractions. An AAA study found that using these systems could distract users and inhibit their ability to respond to red lights and other simulated on-road situations, particularly for seniors.
So how can you use your car’s infotainment system safely? Here are a few tips from Natasha Misra Law.
If you use GPS to get most places, setting up your destination while your car is stationary and parked is the best way to use your GPS system safely – and avoid typing in addresses and other distractions while driving on the road.
If you need to change your destination, make a phone call, adjust some settings on your infotainment system, or perform other such actions, don’t do so on the road.
Consider pulling into a parking lot or into a safe place on the side of the road to take these actions. This way, you can focus your attention on the task at hand – rather than splitting it between your infotainment system and the road.
Most modern infotainment systems support voice control on their own, and many of them also integrate support for phone-based voice assistance like Apple’s Siri or Google Assistant via Bluetooth.
Using voice commands allows you to do things like make calls, change GPS destinations, and even tune the radio. We recommend consulting your user’s manual to learn more about voice control, and to see how you can use it in your infotainment system.
Even changing the song playing on your infotainment system could distract you from the road for a few seconds at a time – and this could result in a dangerous on-road situation or an accident. Consider setting up a music playlist in advance of your trip so that you don’t have to mess with your tunes while you’re on the road!
If someone’s traveling with you, hand off the responsibilities to them, and ask them to change the song, enter GPS directions, call someone, or take whatever other action you need to do while driving. They can fiddle with the infotainment system all they want without any risks.
Distractions come in many forms when driving, and this can include your vehicle’s built-in infotainment system. So follow these tips from our law firm, and protect yourself, your passengers, and other road users.
Need help getting compensation for an accident? Natasha Misra is an experienced Milwaukee auto accident attorney, and can help you explore your case and your options. Contact us online or give us a call at 414-246-9707 to get started today.
My law practice is dedicated to helping people who have suffered injuries in accidents which were not their fault. Born and raised in Milwaukee, I come from a family of medical professionals. My background and experience help me understand and represent individuals injured in accidents.