Driving in heavy traffic this Christmas

As lockdown comes to a hiatus over Christmas, there is bound to be a lot of drivers rushing out to see loved ones dotted around the UK. The Government has allowed us to come together for a short time window over the festive period, which is likely to cause a huge bottleneck on motorways at certain times. Before you rush out in eagerness to see your family and friends, it’s important you prepare for a potentially rough ride as millions do the same. Here’s our top tips on how to make sure you don’t ruin your Christmas by having an accident or prang:

  • Park your aggression – Frustration can lead to drivers making bad choices, like zigzagging in and out lanes looking to progress quicker. This only leads to more queues and anger building up in traffic so make sure it’s not you
  • Stay alert – You may be at a standstill or creeping along your given route, but that’s when strange things can happen. Be a defensive driver and ready for the unexpected to occur even at low speed
  • Check your distance – Sitting on the bumper of the car in front is never advisable, even at low speed. Be sure to maintain a good distance between you and the car in front to avoid braking and anyone being caught out behind you
  • Don’t block access – Keeping your morale up in a jam is good and every little move forward can feel like progress. Refrain, though, from moving into a space that blocks other routes for drivers not stuck, like turnings, roads and junctions
  • Have a breather – If traffic is hard going and you are losing your awareness of what’s going on around you then try and get off the road to have a break if the option is available. It will help to refresh your senses and avoid causing an incident
  • Don’t get distracted – When progress is slow going, it’s hard to not feel compelled to look at your phone or have a bite to eat, but try to maintain your focus on the road as split second lapses can lead to mistakes and crashes
  • Plan ahead – If you know you are likely to find traffic on your route be sure to plan out an alternative route in case. Also have water, food and other essentials with you in case of any lengthy stoppages
  • Keep your driving etiquette – When traffic is moving it’s easy for you to stop indicating your intentions of switching lane or merging. By continuing to follow the rules when acting out manoeuvres, you’ll avoid confusing and impacting other road users

Getting to see family members this Christmas is an exciting prospect after a challenging year, but make sure you get to your destination safely and don’t spend the festive season on the phone to your insurance company. You can find more road safety and driving tips on our blog.