Summer Driving Tips

22 Aug

so what makes summer driving so dangerous?

On the surface, driving through a summer heat wave seems quite serene compared to a winter whiteout. But according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), August actually had the highest number of fatal car accidents of any month in 2013, with 3,136. What’s more, July and September each had over 2,900 fatal accidents themselves.

Here are a handful of reasons why summer often trumps winter in the danger department.

More teens on the road

When school’s out, more teen drivers hit the roads. Sadly, more teen drivers on the road can mean more danger for the rest of us. The unavoidable lack of experience (we’ve all been there) can lead to questionable judgment that can increase the risk of an accident. And data shows that teens are more likely to be involved in accidents than other age groups.

Drivers on vacation add to road congestion

We all have our favorite summer destinations, and suffering through traffic jams is the price we gladly pay for getting there. Congested roads make for harder driving conditions and the potential for road rage, so plan ahead. (And watch out for those impatient drivers who might cut you off.)

Vacationing drivers are often unfamiliar with the roads, as well, which can lead to erratic or unpredictable driving (especially when there’s something cool to look at). And because they’re unfamiliar, they may drive too slowly.

Tire blowouts

Summer can do a number on your tires. As AAA explains, hot weather causes the air inside your tires to expand, which can lead to a blowout in well-worn wheels. Check your tires on a regular basis during the summer months, especially during heat waves.


Summertime is a popular time for road construction. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that construction and maintenance work zones averaged 669 driving fatalities per year from 2007 through 2012. Always be a little extra cautious when you drive around construction zones.

More bicycles and motorcycles on the road

Many cyclists and bikers take advantage of the warm weather by finally getting their vehicles out of the garage and onto the streets, which makes sharing the road a priority for drivers.

Driving alongside cyclists can make traffic maneuvers, from turning right to parallel parking, more dangerous. The IIHS reports that 741 cyclists were involved in fatal accidents with motor vehicles in 2013 alone.

Sun and excess heat

The scorching summer sun can dehydrate you on long drives, so keep a bottle of water handy.

And of course, the chance of your engine overheating increases, especially if you have to rely on your air conditioner to keep yourself from overheating. If your engine overheats, pull over to let it cool down.

avoiding the summertime driving blues

In spite of all its glorious perks, summer can be a dangerous time to drive. Season-specific variables like more teens on the road and more work zones conspire to jeopardize that easy, breezy summer feeling.

By knowing what you might encounter, you can keep yourself safe and enjoy the better weather.

Movies Under the Walkway

17 Aug


Mid-Hudson Subaru was delighted to sponsor such a wonderful event. Last movie is this Saturday – don’t miss it!

Over four hundred people came out to enjoy a free double feature of Alexander and the Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day and Pokemon- The First Movie and hear music by The Costellos on August 6th at the Upper Landing Park, Poughkeepsie, NY. This was the fourth in a series of five family-friendly movie nights taking place beneath the Walkway Over the Hudson at the Upper Landing Park in Poughkeepsie this summer.

Over the summer, over two thousand people have enjoyed films like Back to the Future, Minions and Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and music from The Creation Bank, Matthew Finck and Friends, The Greyhounds and the Costellos.

 The season’s finale will take place on August 20th featuring ZOOTOPIA, with musical guests, Vito Petroccitto and Four Guys in Disguise, and a Disney Trivia Contest.

Musical entertainment begins at 7 p.m., followed by the feature film at sundown, approximately 8:30 p.m.

Since these events will take place at the Upper Landing Park under the stars, all attending are encouraged to bring blankets and chairs to enjoy the movies. Local food vendors will be on hand.

The MHR Foundation, New York State Parks Department and the Walkway are partnering with the Poughkeepsie Public Library District and the Mid-Hudson Civic Center to present the free film series for the community. The media sponsor is IHeart Media and the promotional sponsors are Clark Patterson Lee Engineers, Mid-Hudson Subaru, Rhinebeck Ford, Marshall and Sterling Insurance, Vince’s Autobody, Ballantine Communications, and Millman’s T-Shirt Factory.

Further details and information about parking and scheduling can be found at the Facebook page for MOVIE NIGHTS UNDER THE WALKWAY.


A fun way to support a great cause

15 Aug


Driving Hacks

8 Aug

These fun driving hacks are sure to make your driving experience a little more fun, a little more interesting, and a little easier.

The summer is a great time to visit new places, but being somewhere new can often get you lost. As soon as you park, drop a pin on your phones map app. That way you can always find your way back.

Use dryer sheets to help keep the car smelling fresh.

To cool a hot car quickly, roll down one window all the way and then walk to the other side and open and close that door a few times. Another hot day tip – when you park your car turn your steering wheel 180 degrees, that way the top won’t be hot when you drive home.

Too cool down a car without using the AC, only open the driver and passenger windows. The breeze will be a lot stronger.

The best way to avoid blind spots is to position your side mirrors so that no part of your car is visible in them.

When stuck in a traffic jam, pay attention to what lane the 18-wheelers are using. They have a higher seat and can see further, plus they have radios and usually let each other know which lanes to avoid.

If you get lost ask a food delivery business for directions.

Enjoy the drive!



Hairdressers Ball

1 Aug

Don’t miss this super fun event!

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6 Tips for Keeping a Car Cool in Summer

18 Jul

From Nationwide Insurance:

We’ve all been there. On a hot summer day, we return to our parked car after a few hours of shopping or a day at the office. Opening the door, we’re met by a burst of hot air that makes us feel like we’re about to melt. There’s nothing to do but get in the car and hope the air conditioner kicks in… fast!

While there’s not much you can do about the weather, there are a few things you can do to offset the way it affects the interior of your car.

1. Park in a shaded area

Or, if possible, in a garage. Having the sun beat down on your car directly will cause the temperature to rise quickly. According to, it’s not just comfort to be concerned about – the sun’s rays can also do some serious damage to the interior of your car, causing the leather to become brittle and fading or cracking your dash.

2. Try tinting

Tinted windows can keep your car cooler, and they also help protect the interior from sun damage.

3. Use a sun shade

Keeping a sun shade in the car is helpful because you can’t always guarantee that you’ll find a shaded or covered area to park in. These UV heat shields will keep the interior from getting super-hot, plus it protects your interior from the damaging effects of the sun. You might even consider getting a custom-made sun screen that is designed to fit your make and model of car. These special shades can be more effective at keeping all of the rays out.

4. Get rid of the hot air

Closed windows trap hot air, and the glass serves as a conductor that helps heat up the enclosed space. Leave your windows open slightly so the air can escape – and if you have a sunroof, crack that, too. Make sure the opening is not large enough for someone to reach through. If you leave your windows cracked, remember to keep an eye on the weather – one sudden summer storm could lead to a soggy interior.

5. Start at the bottom

Most people get in the car and turn the upper vents on “high” to get the air flowing. But you’re actually better off directing the air through the floor vents. Hot air rises, so switch to the bottom vents and put your blower on the maximum setting to push that air out. Then, once the car begins cooling, you can open the upper vents again.

6. Use the fresh air setting on your A/C

Using the re-circulation setting means you’re just moving that hot, trapped air around your vehicle, so that’s something you want to use after your car has had the chance to cool down. Give it 10 minutes or so, then switch over.

Safety Tip: Never leave a pet or a child in a car in the summertime, even if it’s just for a few minutes and you have cooled the car. Temperatures can rise quickly – studies have found that even on cool days, cars can heat up by more than 40 degrees within an hour – and about 80 percent of that increase comes in the first five minutes of turning off the car’s air conditioning.

All cars get hot in the summer sun and heat – but if your car still hasn’t cooled down after 5-10 minutes, it could be a sign of overheating.

Summer Driving Risks (and How to Avoid Them)

11 Jul

from Nationwide Insurance:

While we hear plenty about the dangers of winter driving, we often ignore the hazards that come with summertime driving. Statistics show summer is actually a riskier time to be on the road. The Insurance Information Institute shows the highest number of fatal car accidents occur in August. While summer offers some of the year’s best driving and weather, it’s important not to take it for granted.

Jose Alberto Ucles of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) explains that several factors can increase summer dangers. Here’s a look at some common dangers of driving in the summer, and how to avoid them:

  • Construction: Along with more drivers on the road, there’s often more work being done on the road. Nearly 700 fatalities each year occur in construction or maintenance areas, so stay alert, heed warning signs and slow down in construction zones.
  • Blowouts: Hot weather can wreak havoc on your tires since the hot air expands inside of them. If your tires are well worn, it poses an even more imminent threat. Check your tires for wear on a regular basis and always make sure you check them when temperatures spike.
  • More traffic: Summer is the time for family vacations, which means more congested roads – and everything that goes with them. That can include traffic jams that lead to impatient drivers. Do your part to avoid actions that could irritate other drivers. Keep in mind vacationing drivers are often unfamiliar with the roads and may make sudden stops, lane changes or drive slowly. Be patient!

Watch out for other people on the road

Cars aren’t the only culprits in increasing congestion on the road; Ucles says warmer weather also attracts more pedestrians, motorcyclists and bicyclists.

“These road-users are more vulnerable because they do not have the protection of a car or truck,” he says. “Leave more distance between your car and motorcycles, as they are much lighter and can stop in much shorter distances.”

A tricky time for teens

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), 38 percent more deaths of teenage drivers occur during June-August than during the preceding three months. There are many reasons it’s such a dangerous time for teens, according to experts. For starters, teen drivers are less experienced, so they are at a higher risk for car accidents.

Insurance stats show teens are more likely to be involved in accidents than any other age group. They are also the group of drivers most likely to text or use a cell phone while in a moving vehicle.

Investing in a safe driving course for your teen driver is a great way to make sure that they’re aware of the hazards and dangers around them. And, since the IIHS reports that most fatal accidents involving young drivers happen between 9 p.m. and midnight, it’s also a good idea to limit the amount of driving they do after 9 p.m. – particularly on the weekends.

Safety to go

Finally, Ucles reminds us emergency kits aren’t just for winter. Summer driving can cause a car to overheat or, as mentioned earlier, could result in blown-out tires. Rather than risk being at the mercy of strangers on the side of the road, the NHTSA recommends carrying the following items with you at all times:

  • Cell phone and car charger
  • First aid kit
  • Flashlight
  • Flares and white flag
  • Jumper cable
  • Tire pressure gauge
  • Jack
  • Work gloves and change of clothes
  • Nonperishable food, drinking water and medicines
  • Extra windshield washer fluid
  • Maps
  • Emergency blankets and towels

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