It might not seem long since we were all being advised on how to cope with torrential downpours and even hail on the roads, but all that now seems to have abated – and IAM RoadSmart is urging motorists to drive safe during any summer heatwaves instead.

Top tips to beat the highway heat

Head of driving standards Richard Gladman said it is essential to properly prepare for what could be hot journeys on the roads, even if you only happen to be day-tripping on a stay-cation.

He recommended staying hydrated and ensuring there is a bottle of water in the car at all times, as becoming dehydrated can make it difficult to concentrate.

Speaking of concentration, the expert also pointed out that heat itself can cause tiredness after around two hours, which may make driving more hazardous. Therefore, it is essential to take regular breaks at service stations or other rest areas to get a breather from the driver’s seat.

IAM RoadSmart also recommends creating an emergency kit for the summer just as you might in the winter, with drinks, snacks and other essentials packed in the boot and ready to grab if necessary.

If you have children and plan to take them, you may want to add some kind of entertainment for them to that kit too, as any kind of delay could prove stressful otherwise.

Of course, this is on top of all the usual advice to plan your journey, look at traffic updates and check your car’s water, oil and tyres before heading out on any trip.

“Preparation is key to an enjoyable trip. Whilst the trip may be about the destination, it is much better if the journey is enjoyable too,” said Mr Gladman.

The advice comes after Highways England said last month that the busiest single weekend for motorway breakdowns in 2018 was the first weekend in August, followed closely by the final weekend in July.

If you’re lucky to be attending a festival this summer, have a look at our Festival Driving tips.

Heather Stark, brand manager at The Fuelcard People, comments: “It may seem obvious, but many people forget it is as essential to plan for summer car journeys as it is for winter ones. Don’t get caught out in the heat this year – if we get any, of course!”

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