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2 years ago · by · Comments Off on Left Lane

Left Lane

We’ve heard many of you didn’t know: The left lane on a divided highway is a PASSING lane. After you pass someone, move into the right lane so you don’t hold up traffic. Impeding the flow of traffic by continuing to drive in the left lane is punishable by a fine of up to $200.

A passing lane is commonly referred to as a “fast lane” because it is often used for extended periods of time for through traffic or fast traffic. However, a passing lane should be used only for passing, thus allowing, even on a road with only two lanes in each direction, motorists to travel at their own pace.

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2 years ago · by · Comments Off on Traffic Jam Tips

Traffic Jam Tips

Below are some useful tips for the next time you are in traffic.

Image result for traffic

Make smart driving decisions:

  • Avoid aggressive driving and weaving from lane to lane.
  • Keep a safe distance at least three seconds between you and the vehicle ahead of you. This will help you avoid frequent braking and rear-end collisions.
  • Watch the traffic ahead closely. When cars in front brake, take your foot off the accelerator to slow down gradually before you brake. Be cautious not to brake abruptly.
  • Stay focused. Keep your mind on driving by avoiding distractions such as eating or using your cell phone.

Follow driving fundamentals

  • Use your blinkers when changing lanes or merging. Most state laws require activating blinkers at least 100 feet before merging or turning, but some states require at least 200 feet.
  • Use your mirrors to monitor the areas around your car. Perform head checks to check your blind spots before changing lanes or merging.
  • Use the length of the acceleration lane to merge safely into traffic.
  • Be responsible with technology, and plan ahead. Before you start your trip, check traffic apps on your phone or listen to radio reports to avoid congested areas. If you’re worried about encountering heavy traffic during your commute, take time before you leave to map out an alternate route on your GPS.

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2 years ago · by · Comments Off on Check The Back Seat

Check The Back Seat

As the heat rises so does hot-car death rates. New technology may be able to help cut these down.

Drivers get reminders to wear a seat-belt, turn off the headlights and close the gas-tank door. Now, they’re also getting alerts to check the back seat for young passengers.

Nissan’s rear-door alert system will become standard on all four-door trucks, cars and SUVs with power locks by its 2022 model year. The system has door sensors, a dashboard message and horn ‘chirps’ that remind drivers to check the back seat.

This year 29 children have died from heatstroke while in a hot vehicle.  This makes 2018 one of the deadliest on record. Heatstroke is the leading cause of non-crash related vehicular deaths.

Nissan plans to announce  a system that will remind drivers to check for occupants in the back seat. Nissan’s system will become standard on all four-door trucks, cars and SUVs with power locks by its 2022 model year. Nissan is believed to be the first to make such an alert a standard feature across its fleet of applicable vehicles, a move safety-advocates have long recommended.

You have reminders for seat-belts, but should you really have a reminder not to leave your children in the hot car?

 

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2 years ago · by · Comments Off on When was the last time you thought about an emergency-preparedness plan?

When was the last time you thought about an emergency-preparedness plan?

“Never,” is the answer most people would give, which could have terrible consequences if you happen to be caught in the middle of a disaster. September was National Preparedness Month but hurricane season is here until the end of November and since disasters can strike at any moment, it’s important to prepare before disaster strikes …today.

Creating an emergency plan is a good start, but remember, you should review it with your family annually. For example, do you have a newborn in the family? Did you adopt a pet? Have emergency kit materials expired? If you’ve experienced any of these or other changes, then you need to update your plan to make sure you’re prepared. Here are six things to consider during your routine yearly disaster preparedness check-up:

  1. Check emergency kit materials
    Refresh everyone’s memory of where the emergency kit is located. Check expiration dates of materials in the kit to assure perishable items will last for at least another year, including food, water and batteries.
  2. Update your emergency plan
    A basic plan should have a meeting place in case disaster hits and your home becomes unsafe, as well as at least two escape routes. Each year, make sure to remind everyone of the meeting place, ensure it is still a safe location and evaluate everyone’s escape routes to avoid new obstructions. Take into account any special needs of children, seniors, people with disabilities, family members who don’t speak English and pets.
  3. Know how to turn off your utilities
    Learn where the utility shut-offs are located and how to operate them. Turning off gas mains can prevent leaks and turning off electricity can help prevent potential fires started by electrical sparks. Additionally, turning off your water main can help prevent flooding.
  4. Practice home safety 
    Home safety should be observed year-round, not just in the event of an impending disaster. Install smoke detectors in each room of your home and replace the batteries every six months. Store heavy items on the lowest shelves. Combustible items such as firewood, picnic tables, boats and flammable liquids should be kept separately and 50 feet from your home and other structures.
  5. Prepare your insurance Getting ready for a natural disaster actually starts by choosing your insurance policy. Ask yourself: Do I have enough insurance to repair or replace my home if it is damaged or destroyed? We recommend you get an insurance check-up from your agent or broker once a year to help you make an informed decision about the coverage you need.
  6. Catalog your property
    Recovering from a disaster takes time. To ease this process, keep a detailed inventory of your property and update it annually. Photos and videos of your home can be presented to insurance adjusters to help your claim. Mashable, a technology blog, provides a list of eight home inventory apps that make creating inventory of your property easy.

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2 years ago · by · Comments Off on Things To Check On Your Car In This Heat

Things To Check On Your Car In This Heat

We know it’s hot outside. We want you to stay in your AC as long as possible. 4 things to check on your car before you hit the road in this Texas heat:

1.Coolant and fluid levels

2.Water in battery

3.Belts & hoses

4.Tire pressure

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2 years ago · by · Comments Off on Thunderstorm Tips

Thunderstorm Tips

No place outside is safe when a thunderstorm is in the area. It is best to seek shelter in a building or hard-topped metal vehicle as fast as you can. If you can’t, use these lightning safety tips to reduce the probability of you or someone else being struck by lightning.

Always be prepared if the worst should happen. A thunderstorm is considered severe if it produces hail at least 1 inch in diameter or has wind gusts of at least 58 miles per hour. Every thunderstorm produces lightning, which kills more people each year than tornadoes or hurricanes. Heavy rain from thunderstorms can cause flash flooding, and high winds can damage homes and blow down trees and utility poles, causing widespread power outages. During a thunderstorm make sure you stay away from windows, electrical equipment, and telephones. Make sure your insurance covers damage that can be caused by storms.

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2 years ago · by · Comments Off on Driving At Night

Driving At Night

If you must drive during the peak sleepiness periods, stay vigilant for signs of drowsiness, such as crossing over roadway lines or hitting a rumble strip, especially if you’re driving alone.

Fatigue While Driving

A National Sleep Foundation poll says 60% of adults have driven while they were tired, and another 37%, or 103 million people, have fallen asleep at the wheel. Of those, 13% say they fall asleep while driving at least once a month, and 4% say they have caused a crash by falling asleep while driving.

The reasons are many – shift work, lack of quality sleep, long work hours, sleep disorders – and it doesn’t only happen on lengthy trips.

These staggering numbers are backed up by a report by NHTSA that 100,000 police-reported crashes are a result of driver fatigue. Most crashes or near-misses happen at the times you would expect drivers to be tired: 4 to 6 a.m., midnight to 2 a.m. and 2 to 4 p.m., according to NSF.

Drowsy driving puts everyone on the road at risk. Losing two hours of sleep has the same effect on driving as having three beers, and tired drivers are three times more likely to be in a car crash if they are fatigued.

The National Sleep Foundation offers this advice for driving:

  • Get seven or more hours of sleep a night
  • Don’t drive if you’ve been awake for 24 hours or more
  • Stop every two hours to rest
  • Pull over and take a nap if you’re drowsy
  • Travel during times you are normally awake

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2 years ago · by · Comments Off on Heavy Rains

Heavy Rains

When rain comes down it can be difficult to see, especially when driving. Heavy rains with high water may occur in parts of southeast Texas. Please slow down, pay 100% attention to driving and never drive over flooded roads. Remember to stay safe! See below for some tips  on driving in the rain.

1. Take your time:

 Slowing down is the only way to keep your vehicle from hydroplaning. Also remember that one of the most dangerous times to drive is soon after it begins to rain, as oils on roadway make for slick conditions. Waiting a few minutes, rather than rushing to your destination, can be a safer plan when it is raining.

2. Turn your lights on:

Turn your headlights on to help other vehicles see you. Many states require the use of headlights during rain, even in broad daylight.

3. Give other vehicles more space:

Add 1-2 extra seconds of following time in the rain, which gives you and the cars behind you more time to react to traffic.

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2 years ago · by · Comments Off on Free Safety Awareness Fair

Free Safety Awareness Fair

The Texas Department of Transportation Travel Information Center is hosting a free Safety Awareness

Fair Friday, June 22, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Join us for a fun and informative day with activities for all ages!

Stop by and check it out. Drive safe Texas!

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