Slowly, shops are reopening, and employees are returning to work. The roads will once again be a link to freedom and a place for congestion. We’ll be driving longer distances to familiar places, and cars will again rule the streets.

For those of us who have been lucky enough to stay home, it may feel strange to be back on the road. You might find yourself paying more attention to the trees and Spring flowers. A newfound appreciation in the everyday views from your car window that can bring joy but also an accident.

Preparing yourself and your vehicle for re-entry into the world is a safe and smart move. Before you hit the streets, there are some essential items to check off your list to ensure you’re road-ready:

Batteries can lose their charge if not used. Start your car a day or two before you plan to leave. If any issues do come up, you will have time to fix them before you have to leave home.

It doesn’t hurt to “kick the tires” before going out. Weather changes and lack of use can cause air pressure to fluctuate in your vehicle’s tires. Checking for low pressure or flat tires can help you save gas and having to perform a roadside tire change.

Animals may have found a new home in your car’s engine or wheel wells. Look for any signs of a nest and check visible wires, animals may have chewed threw them.

Confidence in the mechanics of your vehicle will help make your first post-quarantine trip on the roads a safer one. However, the streets won’t be as they were before, and neither will the people driving on them. Consider these extra precautions, and hit the pavement feeling ready for anything:

Give yourself time to get to your destination to account for new construction and road closures you aren’t aware of.

Make sure your insurance is up-to-date, and you switched out old policy cards with new cards you may have received while quarantined. (Hint: many insurance companies are offering refunds due to COVID-19. If you haven’t checked with your company about this opportunity, give them a call.)

Rubbernecking the beauty of Spring. You won’t be the only driver admiring the sites. Keep your eyes focused on the road and the other cars on it.

Not everyone will be out. More space on the road means more room to speed. Be conscious of how fast you are going and the speed of others around you.

We all long for freedom from the isolation of quarantine. With care and confidence, the open road will help us get there. Be safe and know that if you are need of anything, we are here for you.

Do you have a question? Post it in the comments below or emails up [email protected]

Posted Under: St. Louis

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