|Getting ready for a long-distance trip
|Source: Manila Bulletin
Summer is the season where everybody is itching to hit the
road and drive to the country's most popular destinations.
However, before going out, there are a few things to keep in
mind to make the journey hassle-free.
A driver must be physically healthy and mentally alert on the start
of a long-distance journey. Stamina, concentration and
decisiveness are also required. Before rolling down the road on a
long trip, check out the following list to see whether you are really
up to the mark.
1. Did you have a restful night prior to the trip — that is, at least
six hours of sound sleep, and wake up without a trace of fatigue?
Make sure you did not take any medication that might cause
drowsiness later on. Strictly avoid taking tranquilizers.
2. You should feel fresh, and not too hungry or too full. Persons
suffering from epilepsy or intestinal disorders should resign
themselves to passenger seats. Extremely shortsighted drivers
should also do likewise. Are you mentally alert? Let others drive if
you are drunk or still struggling against hangover. Also, do not
drive if you are in an angry or depressed mood, deeply worried
about certain things, or perhaps want to reach your destination in
3. Your attire must be sufficiently comfortable. Ladies should avoid
wearing high-heels while driving. Shoes with good ventilation are
4. Avoid clothes that are too tight. Pants are probably best for
Take along sunglasses that are not too dark, just in case you have
to drive through an extremely bright period of the day.
Take a close look at the following items:
1. Under the hood: check the coolant water in the expansion tank,
the dipstick, as well as the brake and clutch fluid. Make sure they
are at the proper level. Are the belts’ tension and condition
agreeable? Also check other items as recommended by your car
2. Outside: Is the pressure of all tires, including spare, too low or
too high? If in doubt, follow the manuals’ suggestions. What about
the lights and the horn, are they in good order?
3. Arrange the luggage, if any, in an orderly fashion. Those that are
movable while the car is in motion should be secured firmly in
4. Every car can safely carry so much loads, passengers or
otherwise. Too much weight could cause serious damages as a
result, for instance:
* Damage to the car – the engine has to work harder, thus
requiring more fuel and most probably will wear out sooner. The
car’s suspension system will also yield sooner as well;
* Car handling – It will take longer distance and more time to bring
the car to a complete stop. Its stability will also be adversely
affected. If the loads are in the back, the car’s front will lift up and
at night throw its headlight at cars passing in the opposite
direction, which could be fatal. Besides, a car in this condition is
difficult to control. It can only move slowly uphill, while its speed
downhill can be dangerously too fast.
To feel more confident, we recommend that you take the car to
your favorite service center and ask for a thorough long distance
check-up. Have a very pleasant long distance trip.