NHTSA’s Summer Driving Safety Tips

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration suggests that families add the following tips to their summer plans to ensure safety while driving.

Remember: Drivers must avoid dangerous driving. Do not drive distracted and do not drink or use drugs. All passengers must wear seat belts. Children should also be in the right car seat or booster seat for them.

NHTSA tips for safe summer travel

Look out for recalls

Sometimes owners don’t know if their vehicle is recalled and that it needs to be fixed. NHTSA’s VIN Lookup Tool allows you to enter your vehicle identification number and quickly find out if your vehicle has been repaired in a safety recall. Search now at NHTSA.gov/Recalls to check for safety recalls. To be notified about recalls related to your vehicle, tires, or any other equipment, you can sign up for NHTSA.gov/Alerts email alerts, or download the SaferCar App.

Get your car serviced

Regular maintenance like tune-ups and oil changes, battery checks, tire rotations and battery checks can help prevent breakdowns. Your vehicle should be in good shape to drive if it has been maintained according to manufacturer’s instructions. You should schedule a preventive maintenance appointment with your mechanic immediately if it has not been serviced according to manufacturer’s recommendations.

Tire Safety

Each tire should be filled to the recommended vehicle manufacturer’s inflation pressure. This information can be found in the owner’s manual or on a placard on the driver’s door frame. The tire’s correct pressure does not correspond to the number on it. Check your tires when they are cold. This means that the car has not been driven for more than three hours. For more information about tire safety and ratings, visit NHTSA.gov/Tires.

Make sure your children are safe

Heatstroke

You should also be aware of other dangers that children can face in and around cars. Heatstroke can happen when a child gets stuck in a car or is left unattended. Children should never be left alone in a car, even for a few seconds. Vehicles heat quickly. If the temperature outside is in the 80s, temperatures inside can rise to dangerous levels within minutes. Even with the window down, vehicles can reach dangerous temperatures in less than a minute. The body temperature of a child can rise 3 to 5 times faster that of an adult. To learn more about heatstroke prevention, visit NHTSA.gov/Heatstroke.

Parking/Backing Out

To prevent any backovers, make sure you walk around your car to look for children playing and running before backing out of a parking spot or driveway. Remember to look over your shoulder when using a backup camera. Children, pets, and other objects might be hidden from your view, but they could still be in the vehicle’s path. Children often forget about cars and trucks when they play. Children may think motorists will look out for them. Every vehicle has a blind area. The “blind zone” increases in size as vehicles get larger. Backovers of large vehicles, such as trucks, SUVs and vans, are more common than for cars.

Updated 01/24/22