Road safety

Garwin Beukes - Last week we started the series of road safety topics explaining the must checks on your vehicle before you travel over long distances. This week, we take it a step further and focus on the aspects of your cars exterior and why your car should be in tip top shape.

The very first and probably most important aspect to check, would be your tyres.

Check the inflation on your tyres, whether every tyre is on the same pressure. Also look for signs of damage or excessive wear before trying. The two front tyres on Front-wheel-drive cars usually wear faster so changing the set frequently or buying a new set is essential.

The below is a basic to do list when it comes to your car:

  • Make sure all your lights are functional.
  • Test to see that your headlights, park lights, fog lights (if installed) are all in working condition.
  • Test both indicator lights as well as the hazard lights - if one indicator is faulty or not working the indicator will tick faster than usual.
  • Check both tail lights. Have someone press the brakes and see if both brake lights are functional as well.
  • While standing behind the car, have someone put it in reverse to ensure that the reverse lights work (keep in mind that some vehicles are customary fitted with one reverse light only).
  • Check if all windows and mirrors are visible enough. Cracks and blurry bulges might decrease your visibility on the road; and can get you a hefty fine.
  • Wiper blades wear easily. With Namibia's random weather conditions one never knows what to expect in another town. Replace your wiper blades at least annually.
  • Have your battery tested! You can also check for corrosion around the terminals of your battery as well as checking the water levels on your battery. It's best to have a mechanic do this to ensure you do not end up standing in the middle of nowhere.

Next week we tackle vehicle height and speak to a suspension guru on the safety as well as performance levels.