Wednesday, August 5, 2020

The essential elements to travel by car in summer

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In a summer as special as that of 2020, to the usual elements that must be carried in the car when starting a holiday trip, we must add everything necessary to guarantee disinfection and prevention against Covid-19.

The use of masks is mandatory by all occupants (including the driver) when people do not live at the same address. It is also recommended to have latex gloves or hand sanitizing liquids to use them when you are leaving the vehicle to fill up gasoline, make a purchase or pay a toll, for example.

Before undertaking a long trip it is advisable to carry out a complete sterilization of the car. In addition, to avoid the risk of transmission of the coronavirus, it is convenient clean before and after each trip any area where the occupants can lean, such as the steering wheel or the gear lever, with a disposable cloth, a wipe or a spray.

In addition to this specific advice in the midst of the pandemic, we cannot forget that all papers must be in order, the past ITV, the main safety elements reviewed, and we also have to have the basic recommendations to avoid dehydration or sleepy driving.

First of all, the ITV moratorium must be taken into account: Many drivers have doubts about how and when they have to pass the technical inspection, an essential procedure to be able to drive. Recall that vehicle owners have recently been reported whose ITV expires after the Alarm State and until August 31, have a three-month moratorium, according to article 29 of Royal Decree 26/2020. However, it is recommended to request an appointment as soon as possible, since the date of the last inspection will be taken into account when the next ITV expires. For any questions, TÜV Rheinland makes its website or your customer service email available to you info.itv@es.tuv.com.

At the same time, it must be ensured that the compulsory insurance is in force and that the driving license has not expired. And before starting, it is convenient take a look at the fluid level (brakes, oil, coolant …), check the engine temperature, the cooling system, check that there is no light out and even that the seat belts work properly.

Aside from the comfort it provides to combat these hot days, air conditioning is an important element in safety because it reduces driver fatigue. Before setting out it is advised to check that it works well.

As to the tires, its great importance is due to the fact that it is the only contact element between the vehicle and the road. Therefore, it is necessary to check the pressure of the wheels, the tread and check the condition of the spare tire to avoid an unpleasant surprise if it must be used.

Regarding additional equipment, we must take into account that the trunk must contain at least one reflective vest and two approved triangles signaling danger in case of failure. Although not required, it is also ideal to include, just in case, a flashlight, a fire extinguisher, or a first aid kit.

Finally, regarding the rules when traveling, we remember that when driving at a temperature of 35 degrees it reacts 20% slower than if it is done at a temperature of 25º. For this reason, as far as possible do not take the car when it is hotter.

It is recommended to constantly hydrate yourself to combat the heat. However, the police can fine a driver if he sees him having any kind of drink behind the wheel. Therefore, it is best to take a break from time to time to stretch your legs, relax and of course drink water.

It never hurts to remember that at any time of the year, also in summer, you must comply with the speed limit, respect the safety distance, pay attention to signs and do not drink alcohol or use drugs behind the wheel.

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