Each summer, millions of travelers hit the open road to enjoy the majestic landscape of the United States. Preparing for any vacation is exciting, but when you are planning to explore the great outdoors, it presents a unique set of circumstances to consider.
If you were planning a vacation to a Caribbean island, a bathing suit and sunscreen might be all you need. For a backpacking trip through Europe, you might buy a power adapter and pack only the bare minimum of clothes needed. But planning for a road trip based around outdoor activities means you’ll want to take some time putting together your packing list so that it considers safety, function, and fun.
No matter how much preparation you do, you could still end up injured, and that injury might be the fault of someone else. To fully understand what to do in that situation, speak with a Las Vegas personal injury lawyer today.
How to Get Around
Whether you are filling up your regular sedan, renting a minivan or SUV, or even if you are upgrading to an RV, you will want to do a last safety check before heading out to Route 66.
Taking your own car? Bring it to a mechanic for a pre-road trip inspection. The last thing you need is a blown tire or overheating transmission. Do your research on the right mechanic, too. Taking your vehicle to a mechanic who is not licensed or well-trained, could leave you paying more to have your vehicle fixed by a true professional after your less than reputable mechanic messed it up.
If you are getting a vehicle from a rental car company, it is still an excellent idea to do a final check before driving it away. Take pictures, or video, of the vehicle inside and out. Double-check the air conditioning and heat, windows, lights, and tires. Make sure you rent from a reputable car rental company that provides roadside assistance. You may have your own service but the rental company’s roadside assistance might cover more than what your private carrier does and they may include an additional rental vehicle, should you need it.
The same applies for an RV rental. You will want to make sure you fully understand internal controls before you leave the lot, along with the vehicle’s built-in safety measures. These vehicles often come equipped with fully operational kitchens and a propane hookup for a grill. These conveniences also pose dangers if you do not know how to properly operate them.
For RVs specifically, most people are not familiar with driving a vehicle so large. Leave yourself a little extra time when you pick up the rental. This will allow you to drive it around the lot, or take the long way home so that you get more comfortable driving the larger vehicle.
No matter what mode of transportation you select, confirm your insurance covers you. For standard car rentals, the car insurance you may already pay for could extend to cover the rental. With an RV, you likely must purchase additional insurance. Speak with the rental company for recommendations.
Outdoor Activity Safety
Hiking, biking, and water sports encompass some of the most popular activities for summer road-trippers. At first glance, you may think you only need sneakers, wheels, or a bathing suit to enjoy any of them.
But not so fast—many popular destinations are remote, and not easily accessible in emergencies. While you never expect something to go wrong, it’s important to include safety measures in your packing plan.
The most obvious thing to put at the top of the list is a first-aid kit. You can either buy a pre-made kit at your local pharmacy, or put one together yourself with separate items you probably already have around your house.
Some recommended essentials in your first-aid kit include:
- Antibiotic ointment
- Anti-itch cream
- Surgical tape
- Pain relievers
- Small scissors
- Alcohol or antiseptic wipes
If you plan on hiking or biking, liquid band-aid and moleskin are useful tools when you are trying to tend minor scratches and cuts on the side of a trail. It’s also a good idea to let someone know where you are going. If you head out to a remote spot, you may not have cell phone reception and may be unable to call for help if you find yourself in an unsafe or dangerous situation. When someone knows your plans, they could alert authorities if they have not heard from you after a period of time.
When it comes to water safety with children, the process first should begin at home. If your child is not confident in his or her water skills, consider swimming lessons well before your vacation begins. Packing floatation aids such as life jackets or pool floats can put parents at ease knowing their children have added support while in the water.
Finally, taking a CPR course will provide you with life-saving tactics in the event of a catastrophic emergency. The Red Cross and The American Heart Association are two of the largest providers of classes. Check with your local hospital as well to find a class that suits your time and budget.
Summer road trips are times to create lasting memories with family and friends. While preparing your list of restaurants, hiking trails, and other activities that will make your trip the best possible, adding safety measures to your planning will also ready you for anything unexpected you may face. Whether you and your family are taking a day trip to the Grand Canyon or trekking across the country, taking these steps can help to keep you and your family safe.
Benson & Bingham Accident Injury Lawyers, LLC
626 S 10th St
Las Vegas, NV 89101