Vigilance on snowy roads key to a safe journey

Good planning for long-distance road trips makes the experience more enjoyable. A well-rehearsed driver who has studied their desired route and is well-rested is better prepared when encountering obstacles such as wildlife or changed road conditions.

Vigilance on snowy roads key to a safe journey

However, many distractions that can affect a driver’s alertness occur inside the cabin, either from passengers or electronic devices such as a smartphone or GPS. An illegal and dangerous mistake for drivers is handling an electronic device without it being secured to a mount to make phone calls.

Looking at the GPS or reading a text message compromises your driving ability. VicRoads reports that a two-second distraction from driving can be catastrophic.

John Blake is a regular skier during the snow season and makes the almost five-hour journey from Melbourne up to Falls Creek.

“Even though I have travelled to Falls Creek many times, I always make sure that I have studied the route and have planned a rest stop every two hours,” Mr Blake said.

Without regular rest breaks drivers are risking their own safety as well as the lives of others when they are driving fatigued.

“I usually stop at Euroa and Wangaratta to recharge and stretch the legs on the way to the snow,” Mr Blake recalls.

“The best thing about my journey is having my mobile phone secured to a Bracketron mount which fits in my car’s cup holder.

“It is very flexible and fits both my Samsung Galaxy and Apple iPhone. The non-skid padding stops any scratching and I can rotate it 360 degrees,” he said.

State and territory jurisdictions are toughening their stance on illegal GPS and mobile phone usage. Motorists caught in Victoria using an electronic device without a mount face a $477 fine and 4 demerit points.

A wise motorist using their GPS or smartphone secured to a mount can focus on driving and respond more quickly to a dangerous situation, especially on narrow regional roads which have little room for error.

“My Bracketron mobile phone mount allows me to stay focused on driving, rather than taking my eyes of the road,” Mr Blake said.

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