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Traverse City Mi 49686
Garfield Auto Service Center
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Traverse City Mi 49686
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Fall Driving: How To Drive Safe This Autumn

September 18, 2020, 12:00 am

Color tours, holidays, and car rides. Autumn is an enjoyable and picturesque time of year for exploring and road trips, but it can also throw up some challenges for drivers, too. 

Fall is very quietly one of the more dangerous times of year for driving. Even cautious, careful drivers can be caught out by changing road conditions, late sunrises and early sunsets, and other curveballs. No matter the time of year, you can do more to stay safe by taking care of your vehicle with regular maintenance. Fall is a great time of year to check your tires, brakes, windshield wipers, and your headlights, tail lights, and brake lights. 

Rainy Roads. After what may have been a dry summer, September and October often bring more rainy days. Research shows that the first ten minutes of a rain are the most dangerous. This is because the moisture raises oil, dirt, and debris which isn’t washed away for those first ten to twenty minutes. Warm rain is an added challenge, with warm water doing more to loosen and activate oil on the road that can make wet conditions even more slippery. 

Leaves. As beautiful as they are to look at, once those fall leaves hit the road ways, they’re treacherous. Leaves can be extremely hazardous under your tires, but they can also hide pot holes or other road debris. Always try to avoid leaves, especially piles of leaves, no matter where they are in the roadway. Slow down, check both on-coming traffic and traffic behind you, and proceed with great care through or over leaves. 

School Traffic. Traffic increases by as much as 20% during the school year, with parents driving kids to and from class. Additionally, school traffic includes more kids on bikes and on foot making their way to school. You should always be alert to pedestrians, but it’s especially during arrival and dismissal times. Find out when schools near you start and end, and consider making a detour away from those neighborhoods during those peak traffic times. 

Deer and Wildlife. Fall also brings out some natural road users, too! Deer and other animals are much more active during the autumn months for migration and mating season. Especially at dawn and dusk, wild animals are extremely active in rural areas. Don’t relax in-town, though; even bigger animals like deer frequent more urban neighborhoods. 

Darkness. The days get short extremely quickly by late September. By the time change in early November, many of us do almost all of our driving before the sunrises and after the sunsets! Make sure your headlights are in good working order, drive slow if visibility is low and, as always, never drive distracted. 

Fall can be a difficult time to drive, and many drivers simply get complacent. Enjoy the fall colors and activities, but make this season your time to double-down on driving safely!

 

Posted by Garfield Auto at 12:00 am
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