Reduce the Risk of Auto Body Repair this Valley Winter

valley winter in arizona

Longtime valley residents know mild winter temperatures may not guarantee us from requiring auto body repair. Even though we are not exposed to snow and ice like other parts of the United States, we have other factors that cause collision damage. This month, Airpark Collision Center would like to share some tips to ensure you and your family a safe holiday season.

Valley Road Risks and Possible Avoidance Strategies

Snow Birds

We love our winter visitors but they may be unfamiliar with the roads. Unfamiliarity may cause sudden stops or lane changes without the use of a signal. This driving behavior can land both vehicles in an auto body shop.

The best tip we can give drivers is to proceed with caution. Avoid tailgating, watch for quick lane changes and wait for an opportunity to pass safely. There is no need to get frustrated.

Parking Lot Congestion

Collision damage doesn’t just occur on the road it can happen in the Costco parking lot!

The obvious answer is…. slow down and proceed with caution. Checking your side mirrors and embracing new vehicle technology will also help you avoid auto body repair. Don’t forget to watch for stray carts!

Slippery Roads

slippery roadWe don’t get ice but winter is one of the valley’s rainy seasons. The light rain is just enough to raise the engine oil and other substances from the road and cause very slippery conditions!

The best solution is to slow down and allow more time to get to your destination. Avoid using cruise control in the rain. If your car hydroplanes, it could cause your vehicle to accelerate. In addition, braking with too much force could make your car slide. Sometimes heavy breaking in the rain will cause water to get into the brakes, which could lead to loss of stopping power!

Traveling North

Do you have a cabin up north? Taking the kids to play in the snow or to ride the Polar Express?

Fact is most valley residents are not used to driving in snowy conditions or on ice. Before you leave call ADOT at 511 for road conditions. Trip Advisor suggests drivers avoid using their brights. If you have to pull over turn off your lights. If your vehicle starts to spin don’t fight it, and do not slam on the brakes, instead tap a few times. Using good sense and caution will save you from an insurance claim and auto body repair.

Animals Keeping Warm in your Car

cat under the car

This scenario has nothing to do with auto body damage but for the sake of animal safety, it is worth sharing.

During winter our desert animals are looking for places to keep warm. Many times cats and small wildlife will crawl up under your hood. To avoid injuring any animals knock on your car’s hood to scare them away before starting your vehicle.

Road Rage

Unfortunately, road rage is year round, but increases during the stress of the holiday season. The National Highway Safety Administration reports that road rage is the leading cause of traffic accidents in the U.S.

If you find yourself sharing the roadway with an aggressive driver it may be smart to pull over. Keeping a distance from this person reduces the chance of injury and/or collision damage.

Holiday Road Trip to Visit Friends/Family

The holiday season usually provides people with time off and the opportunity to visit with friends or family.

Some tips for a safe holiday road trip include establishing your route ahead of time and planning pit stops to recharge. Your phone and GPS should be set in hands-free mode. Also, keeping snacks and water within driver reach is a good idea.

Impaired Drivers

alcoholic drink

This happens every year during the holiday season and this hits home for me personally. Innocent people die each year by intoxicated or wrong way drivers.

As motorists, all we can do is use extra caution at intersections, avoid late night driving, wear a seat belt and maintain a generous following distance.

Be conscious of drinking at holiday parties. A “couple of drinks” could be enough to impair judgement. Play it safe and call an Uber or choose a designated driver. If you are charged with drunk driving a trip to the auto body shop will be the least of your problems.

Airpark Collision Center knows you are busy this holiday season, we can help with rental car arrangements and we work with all insurance companies. Stop in or click for an online estimate. Happy holidays!

Tina Small has been part of the Airpark Collision Center team since 2006. Working directly with customers, her goal is to share frequent customer questions, and proper methods of collision repair.

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