Category Archives: Safety Tips

Distracted Driving Awareness Month

distracted driving awareness month

Everyone knows that texting while driving is extremely dangerous, but did you realize that phone use of any kind, even hands-free, can be just as bad? To help raise awareness for that exact issue, April is recognized as Distracted Driving Awareness Month.

According to the National Safety Council, at any given moment, 9% of drivers are talking on their cell phones. We probably all see at least one other driver near us during our commutes who is texting or talking on their phones.

While you might think that using a hands-free device, like the Bluetooth system in your car is safer, it isn’t. Both holding a conversation and driving are thinking tasks that require focus from the brain—this means the brain cannot simultaneously focus on both and actually rapidly switches between the two. Because of this, a driver talking on their cell phone can actually miss seeing up to 50% of the road ahead of them.

Here at Bill Walsh GM Superstore, we want to challenge our customers to commit to driving distraction-free. Think of driving as a time to step away from the always-connected world. You can even sign the online pledge to “Take Back My Drive.”

How to Make a Winter Safety Kit For Your Car

Winter Safety Kit

As the weather cools down and the conditions begin to get snowy, it’s more important than ever to be prepared with a winter safety kit in your vehicle. Here’s a short list of what to include in a safety kit to get you started:

  • Roll up a nice, warm blanket, just in case you ever get stranded in the cold.
  • Similarly, it’s a good idea to stash some warm socks, scarves, hats, gloves, and perhaps even an extra coat if you have space.
  • In the winter, you may also want to have a shovel to move snow.
  • Just like in any safety kit, include a basic first-aid kit, which should include antibiotic ointment and bandages.
  • Keep a nice supply of fresh, clean water, which can either be used for drinking or to wash out a wound.
  • Be sure to include a flashlight and extra flashlight batteries.
  • Lastly, if you can, it won’t hurt to have an extra, charged cell phone available, with a list of emergency phone numbers.

Do you have any other ideas? What do you keep in your car during the winter months? Let us know in the comments below.

Keeping Kids Secure: Child Safety Systems

child safety systems

If you’re a parent, then you certainly understand the importance of child safety systems in your car. As recently as 2014, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been updating regulations and urging parents to stay up-to-date on the latest systems, from LATCH to car seats.

According to Edmunds, LATCH stands for Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children. This innovative system comes standard on most GM vehicles, offering a better way to secure child safety seats. Basically, seats have a hidden anchor point that’s easier, and safer, to latch onto than a regular seat belt.

Of course, weight limits are important to remember. If your child weighs more than 65 lbs, you shouldn’t use the LATCH system. Also, remember that top tethers should be used for forward-facing seats and can be used with LATCH as well.

Children under two years old should ride in rear-facing seats, always in the backseat. Children should use booster seats until they exceed the maximum weight of child seats, and are generally taller than 4 ft. No child should sit in the front seat unless they’re 13 years or older.

For more information on child safety systems, visit SafeCar.gov.