Sheriff Donald Hill offers tips for a safe July fourth weekend

Published 10:00 pm Thursday, July 3, 2014

With the approach of the July fourth weekend, Polk County Sheriff Donald J. Hill asks all citizens to join him in making this Fourth of July holiday period a happy and enjoyable one for all.
Traditionally during the July fourth holiday, our highways experience one of the highest traffic flows of the year. The sheriff reminds all Polk County residents to follow these safety tips:
• Always shift your attention every few seconds, constantly scanning the road ahead and behind you. Never blankly stare ahead nor fix your gaze on one point on the road.
• When passing an automobile, always glance at the ground beside the front wheel of the car you intend to pass. You will know instantly if the car is about to veer-giving you an extra few seconds to respond.
• You should pull out into the opposite lane of traffic when passing while you are still well behind the car in front. This should give you some time and space to build up speed and will enable you to pull back into your own lane should the need arise. Never cut abruptly out of your lane into the opposite lane when passing.
• Always signal your intentions with your brake lights, turn signals, horn and/or headlights so that other drivers will see you well before you change course.
• Drivers should always “aim high” in steering. That is, you should glance frequently at points well ahead of you. Not only will this help your steering, but it will also help you check the position of vehicles in front of you as well as on-coming ones.
• Never follow too closely. Remember that, as your speed increases, it takes you substantially longer to stop. Also remember that it’s good to have an extra cushion of space in front of you if you’re being tailgated, on a slippery road or in low visibility conditions.
Lastly, I would remind all motorists to practice the golden rule when driving. Be courteous and tolerant of other drivers. Please don’t get angry with bad drivers or reckless ones– just get out of their way. Let’s make this summer a safe one on the roads in Polk County.

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