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Christmas Driving 101

The Christmas season is one of the busiest times of the year on the roads. Whether it is more trucks on the road delivering goods and packages, or families traveling for Christmas dinner, it is important that we all stay safe on the road.

Most of what follows is common sense, but it is important for all of us to have a bit of a refresher when it comes to road safety.

- This is an obvious one, but don’t drink and drive. We are in the season of Christmas parties and it is important to be safe after the festivities have ended. It is pretty simple, if you are going to drink, don’t drive. You can stay the night where you are, plan an alternative method home, take a cab, take Uber, have a designated driver or take public transit.

- We may all be in a rush to get to our shopping or holiday get-togethers, but speeding kills. Drive for the conditions because it is better late than never.

- Seatbelts exist for a reason and while your bulky coat may not be comfortable under the seatbelt, it is better to remove the coat and not the belt.

- During the Christmas season, there will be plenty of emergency vehicles on the road. Keep an eye out for sirens and lights when you are on the road. Remember, if you see an emergency vehicle with its lights flashing on the side of the road, slow down to 60 km/h.

- Always be aware that an accident can happen at any time. If you come across an accident or are involved in one, make sure everyone is okay and call 9-1-1. If the vehicles can still be driven, then move them off the road to the side until emergency vehicles arrive. Always turn your four-way flashers on as well.

- Speaking of accidents, it is better to be prepared than sorry. Keep an emergency kit in your trunk at all times. It should contain an ice scraper, shovel, salt, blankets, flares and a flashlight. It is a good idea to have some extra windshield washer fluid too.

- Lastly, it may be a bit of a pain but you should always clear snowfall and ice from every window of your vehicle, as well as the roof. Chunks of snow or ice coming off your roof can cause some severe problems for those driving behind you.

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