A road trip or RV vacation provides the promise of freewheeling fun wherever you go. Keep these safety DOs and DON’Ts in mind while mapping your route.
DO pack bug repellent.
Biting insects, including mosquitoes and ticks, can cause illnesses like malaria and Lyme disease. Bug repellents containing DEET can keep these insects from spreading these or other illnesses.
DON’T drive tired as it increases the odds of getting into an accident.
Instead, plan to stay at campgrounds along the way. RV campgrounds typically feature small convenience stores and RV hookups for water and electricity. Planning on visiting a popular national park, such as Yellowstone National Park? Consider making a campground reservation in advance to ensure you have space to park.
DO plan your route and pack prescribed medications.
It may be tempting to jump in the RV and see where the open road leads. However, planning when and where you’ll be throughout your journey helps ensure you have enough supplies, including prescription medications, to last throughout the trip.
DON’T skip the sunscreen, even if daytime temperatures are cool.
Apply a broad spectrum sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or more 30 minutes before going outdoors. Apply to all exposed skin, and reapply sunscreen every two hours and after swimming or sweating, even if the sunscreen is waterproof or if the weather is overcast or cloudy. Cover ears, eyes and faces with hats and sunglasses.
DO practice water safety.
Take swimming lessons and CPR classes before your trip. If your plans include boating or waterskiing, wear a life jacket. It’s a legal requirement in many states.
DON’T eat all of your meals at restaurants.
Bring plenty of bottled water and snacks, and plan to cook at least some of your meals in your RV. If you want to embrace the spirit of camping even more, pack a small grill or cooktop and prepare your meals outside.
DO stay hydrated, especially when participating in physical activities like hiking or bicycling.
Watch for signs of overheating, which can include fatigue and excessive sweating.
Accidents and emergencies can occur even when you’re on vacation. Be prepared by knowing first aid and CPR. To find courses near you, visit redcross.org.