Summer Holiday Tips and Advice (For you and the kids)

Stay safe this Summer with Hankook Tyre.

Last year over 10 millions Brits chose to stay in the UK for their summer holiday and with this year’s figures looking to hit similar heights, it seems that families across the country are planning long drives and trips to the seaside.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHankook Tyre UK is offering its ten top summer safety tips to help families stay safe in the warmer weather.

Daventry UK, 11 July 2013 – Long journeys and hot temperatures can put extra strain on your car. The last thing any family wants on the way to their holiday hotspot is a breakdown, or worse.

To avoid this and other dangers, Hankook Tyre UK is offering ten top tips to help you stay safe this summer and ready your car for the warmer weather.

Tyre pressure. Check the tyre pressure before a journey, when the tyres are cool. Driving with tyres at an incorrect pressure, especially one which is too low, can be dangerous and also increases fuel consumption adding to the cost of your holiday. A 20 per cent under-inflation of your tyres could reduce fuel economy by 3 per cent.

The recommended tyre pressure for your car can be found in the driver’s manual, however the car load also needs to be taken into account.

Tyre health-check. Before a long trip check the condition of your tyres and inspect them for wear and tear. Look out for any cuts or damage that may weaken the tyre. For caravans check for cracking due to age, if in any doubt seek professional advice as soon as possible.

20p could save £2500 – and your life. Check that the tyre tread depth is above 1.6mm. If you don’t have a tread depth gauge, a quick check is to use a 20p coin. Put the 20p into the lowest tread depth of the tyre. If you cannot see the outer ridge of the coin then your tyres are safe. However, if the coin sits on the surface of the tyre, get your tread depth measured by a professional. Tyres with a tread depth less than 1.6mm could result in 3 points on your license and a £2500 fine per tyre. Hankook recommends a minimum tread depth of 3-4 mm to assure sufficient hydroplaning performance.

Check the coolant/anti-freeze levels in your car. Sitting in traffic on a hot day can rapidly cause the engine to overheat. Anti-freeze helps prevent against overheating too, so should always be included if you need to top up. Remember, only do this when the engine is cool.

Check oil. Another job for when the engine is cool. Make sure the level is between the minimum and maximum indicated on the dipstick.

Check washers and wipers. Washers should be topped up and wiper blades checked for wear or splitting.

Travel light. Do not overload your vehicle or roof-box with your extra holiday luggage. Overloading can seriously affect braking and can cause tyre problems making your vehicle unsafe. When loading luggage also be careful not to restrict your visibility or rear-view mirror.

Long journeys. Avoid stress and distractions by planning the route in advance, taking regular breaks and keeping children entertained. Do not solely rely on satellite navigation, take an up to date map too.

Always be prepared. Even in the UK, the summer sun can be very strong, especially when magnified through car windows so keep sun protection and drinking water in your car.

Never leave child or animals unattended in cars at any time, especially not on a hot day – even with the window open! When the outside temperature is 23°C the temperature in a car can increase by almost 25 per cent in 10 minutes reaching 38°C, and by over 50 per cent in an hour. On a hot 32°C day, temperatures can reach 71°C in mere minutes. Hot temperatures in a car can cause dehydration, severe heat stroke and even death.

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Keep your family entertained this Summer, with a selection of traditional in-car games from the AA. 

image-14As the school holidays approach parents up and down the country are preparing themselves for the age-old call from the back seat of the car of ‘Are we there yet?’  While the planning of where to go and what to take may have started months ago, and the route has been successfully thought through or programmed into the sat nav, parents now need to turn their thoughts towards how to keep the little darlings in the back entertained.

A recent AA/Populus poll, showed that 30 percent of our parents relied on good old car games such as I spy and pub football to keep us entertained on long journey, however these simple games have fallen in popularity with only 14 percent of today’s parents using them.  While we spent journeys counting legs of pub signs or checking for car colours our children are now more likely to be plugged into an electronic device or watching a film with 17 percent of parents now relying on gadgets to keep the little ones entertained.

Bored children can quickly turn the atmosphere in the car into a stress filled time bomb causing distractions for the driver and anxiety for other passengers.

To help these anxious parents, the AA website has a selection of traditional in-car games that can be printed off for the whole family to play on a long journey. These games can be found at Are we there yet? www.theaa.com/arewenearlythereyet

The AA also advises that as well as checking the car before the journey to ensure that fluid levels and tyre pressures are correct, it also pays to pre-plan the in-car essentials. Ensure there are enough drinks and refreshments on board as well as a good selection of activities.  Regular breaks should also be taken, especially on journeys over three hours long.

AA spokesperson, and mother of two, Katie Stephens said, ‘Keeping the younger members of the family entertained makes the journey far easier for the whole family. Thankfully today DVD players and hand-held devices take away some of the pressure but it is still advisable to have some other games and refreshments prepared.  For my daughters I also use the three sweets in a pot trick.  At the start of the journey I put three sweets in two lidded pots.  These are then placed within view and if they moan, whine, bicker or complain, they lose a sweet.  At the end of the first hour they are given the pots and can eat whatever is left and then three more sweets are put in for the next hour. They soon learn that behaving is the best way to get the sweets.  This not only keeps them quiet but also keeps their sugar levels up.  This has worked well on trips to Scotland, Cornwall and the South of France.’

Posted by Amy Moylan

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