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With Memorial Day weekend coming up and college graduations beginning, expect heavy traffic. Whether it’s heading out west for a city trip, heading east for a day at the beach, or taking advantage of all the shopping deals in between, we can expect Long Island to be littered with traffic. Unfortunately, more cars on the road often means more potential accidents. It would be a shame if a fun weekend was cut short because of an unexpected car accident. These tips could help prevent a frustrating and potentially devastating situation.

Plan Ahead

Don’t put yourself in a stressful situation by not taking into account the potential traffic. If you feel rushed, you are more likely to do something unsafe. Check the traffic conditions and leave early.

Stay Calm

Traffic is frustrating. And you can be sure that everyone else stuck in traffic is also unhappy about it. Unfortunately, there is really nothing you can do about it. So it’s best to stay calm and not let it affect your mood. This will prevent you from doing something unsafe in an effort to get through the heavy traffic. Weaving from lane to lane and aggressive acceleration is dangerous. It is not worth getting into an accident to save a mere couple of seconds in traffic. Rather, you should do all you can to stay focused, and expect the unexpected in these heavily trafficked scenarios.

Stay Focused

When you are stuck in bumper to bumper traffic, there is a major temptation to give in to distracted driving. Avoid the temptation to take advantage of the “opportunity” to eat, look at your phone or apply makeup. Often times, other cars make sudden stops, turns and lane changing in heavy traffic and if you are not paying attention, you could easily cause a collision. Additionally, while music can be calming and help pass the time, don’t get too into your music. This is another easy way to lose focus.

Remember Your Driving Fundamentals

While adhering to basic driving fundamentals is always important, it is especially important in heavy traffic situations to always let other drivers be aware of what your vehicle is doing. Long Islanders sometimes have a habit of turning on their directional after they have begun changing lanes. This is not helpful for anyone to anticipate what you are doing, and New York State law require at least a 100 foot warning via turn signal before you turn, merge or change lanes.

Further, it is even more important to check your blind spot before changing lanes. Although it isn’t safe, many cars like to tailgate in heavy traffic so changing lanes can be especially hazardous and only do so if there is a safe amount of space. Avoid cutting people off, it saves you little to no time.

About the Author

Steven Palermo is the managing partner for Palermo Law, Long Island’s Personal Injury Law Firm. He has been helping people receive compensation for their injuries for over 21 years. He focuses on cases involving car accidents, truck accidents, construction accidents href=”/li-slip-and-fall-attorney/”>slip and fall injuries.

His book The Ultimate Guide to Handling New York Car Accident Claims details the ins and outs of a car accident claim in a simple, easy-to-read manner.

It’s that time of year. The students dread it, of course. Unfortunately, some of us dread it too. School buses will be taking over your neighborhood side roads and main roads, school zone speed limits are in effect, and kids are walking and biking to and from school. You have to be cognizant about all of this, as it can directly affect your daily commute and more. The last thing you want is to have to rush to your job every day for ¾ of the year. But the first thing we feel obligated to go over is how to drive safely now that school is in effect, for you, others on the road, and for the children walking to and from school.

Have a Child Going to School Yourself?

When it comes to dropping your kids off at school, safety always comes first – kids get hit by cars more often at school zones than any other locations. That’s a serious reason to follow these tips on back to school safety if you’re dropping your kids off:

We cannot overstate how important it is to recognize the increase of child pedestrians as school starts. Know how to share the road with them safely.

There Will Be Kids Walking – Know How to Safely Share the Road with Them

Kids are much less likely to know how to be safe pedestrians than you are to know how to be a safe driver. It’s your job to take precautions.

Now that we’ve gone over some safety measures you can take to protect yourself and others, let’s go over how you can be smart and safe about getting to work on time, even with back-to-school road congestion.

Think Out Your New Route

You might be used to an easy route out of your neighborhood, onto the main road, and then onto the highway to get to where you need to go. Now that the buses are on the road, you’ll have to reroute your route, both safely and wisely

So, know the extra safety precautions we all must take when school starts next week, and follow them. More and more kids are driving to school. And even though it’s always every driver’s obligation to be safe on the road, the fact remains that these kids may not have as much driving experience as you. Going to sleep a little earlier and adding time to your morning routine so you can safely share the road with school buses is paramount to your safety and the safety of others on the road.
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