Penndots Summer Driving Safety Tips

By: Iver Penn

Summer is here and once again, and with it PennDOT reminds motorists to ensure their vehicle is well-maintained and working properly to ensure safe travel during the summer months.

So before you head to that favorite summer destination make sure you check out your car's parts. Engine hoses and drive belts should be inspected by a mechanic for wear, and the cooling system should be checked to be certain that it is functioning properly to help avoid over-heating. In addition, have the battery checked because battery failure is a common problem during hot weather. You do not want to get stalled in the middle of traffic in stifling weather with a dead battery.

Motorists should also regularly check fluid levels and tire tread depth. A simple way to check the tire tread is to insert a penny in the tread groove with Lincoln's head upside down. If you can see the entire head, your tires are worn and should be replaced. Make sure the tires are properly inflated for maximum fuel efficiency as air pressure inside during hot weather can make the tire can expand, causing a blowout if the tire is in poor condition.

Hot weather can also contribute to problems on roadway surfaces. According to PennDOT, extreme heat causes oils deposited from vehicles to be absorbed into the road. Rain forces these oils to the surface, creating slick spots. Motorists should use extra caution while driving during a rainstorm, particularly after an extended period without rain.

PennDOT also suggests the following tips for safe summer driving:


  • Never leave children or pets unattended in a vehicle, which can heat up quickly during hot weather.

  • When traveling a long distance, try to plan your trip for early in the day or later in the evening when the weather is cooler.

  • Carry a cell phone and charger in case of emergency.

  • Carry extra water and non-perishable food.

  • State law requires headlights to be turned on any time the wipers are in use due to rain, fog or other conditions.

  • Remember to always buckle up and never drink and drive.


And of course, don't forget to fasten your before you go.

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