It's that time of the year when everyone gets excited about the festivals that are just around the corner. And one of them is Diwali, also called the festival of lights. It brings happiness and joy, and you may visit your friends and family to celebrate this occasion together. Visiting your near and dear ones involves driving your car, and you may have to take extra precautions when driving during Diwali. In this article, we throw light on some of the do's and don'ts while driving on Indian roads during Diwali.
The celebration of Diwali involves firecrackers, and that makes driving a bit of a challenge. The reason for that is firecrackers are burst outside, and when there's no clear area or ground available, people usually light up the crackers on roads. And that poses a threat to the commuters and the vehicles. Even a small mistake can lead to a severe accident. That's why road safety during festive season is so important. As a car driver, you have to be extra careful during Diwali.
Below are some of the points you need to keep in mind while driving your car on Indian roads this Diwali.
Always carry a portable fire extinguisher: With firecrackers comes the threat of a fire accident. Hence, it is better to have a portable fire extinguisher in your car. It will come in handy if you face any unfortunate incident caused due to firecrackers.
Roll up the windows while driving: Keeping your car’s windows closed while driving through the busy streets during Diwali is advisable. Rolling up the windows will keep you away from the smoke and noise produced by firecrackers and also prevents any stray firecrackers from getting into your car.
Keep a first aid kit in your car: Indian roads are unpredictable, and this statement is pronounced during Diwali. With people lighting up crackers on the road, there is always a threat of injuries such as burns. So, always carry a first aid kit in your car to treat any injuries caused due to fire or firecrackers. It doesn’t require much space and can help during emergencies.
There’s a vast difference between driving during the daytime and night. The challenge compounds when it comes to driving at night amidst the Diwali celebrations. The reduced visibility and threat of crackers bursting on roads make driving a challenging task. But if you follow some precautions, you can be safe behind the wheel. Below are some tips you can follow to safely navigate the busy Indian roads at night, especially during Diwali.
Always drive under controllable speeds: It is one of the basic rules of driving at night. Never drive over the speed limit when the visibility is compromised. During Diwali, there may be people on the road, and you need to have complete control of the car. You may also find firecrackers on the road, and driving at a controlled speed can help you avert any hazard on the road.
Maintain a safe distance: If you see someone lighting up a firecracker on the road, stop at a safe distance. Do not hurry and drive. There may be more than one firecracker, and it may catch you by surprise. It may also cause damage to your car, so better to be safe than sorry.
Never drive under the influence: Never drive your car in an inebriated state. This rule not only applies during Diwali but at all times. One of the significant contributors to road accidents is driving under the influence of intoxicating substances. So, at all costs, avoid driving if you have consumed alcohol or any other intoxicating substance.
Plan your journey: It’s better to plan the route and start early to avoid any last-minute rush. Maintain enough buffer to drive calmly and safely. If possible, avoid driving at peak times. Patience is the key while driving at night, so make sure you have enough time in your hands to reach the destination.
Check your car’s lights: Before you start driving the vehicle, briefly check if all the components, such as lights, brakes, etc., are working correctly. Lights are critical for a night drive. Hence, check if the low and high beam lights function properly and clean them if necessary. Lastly, check the tyres because you don’t want to drive with an under-inflated tyre and get stuck in the middle of the road due to a puncture.
It’s not only about driving; you also need to be careful about where you park your car during Diwali. With firecrackers everywhere, the chances of a hazard are very high. Hence, you have to choose the parking spot carefully. Here are some preventive measures you may want to follow while parking your car to safeguard your vehicle against fire.
Do not use a car cover: Never use a car cover after you park your vehicle. It is because car covers are not fireproof, and they can catch fire with even the smallest of sparks caused due to firecrackers. Hence, car covers can do more harm than good. So, avoid using car covers during Diwali celebrations.
Park your car in a covered area: The best way to ensure the safety of your vehicle is to park in a covered area such as the basement/parking lot. That way, there is no chance of fire accidents due to crackers. Also, sparks from firecrackers can damage the paint, so parking in a covered area will save you from unnecessary stress.
Do not allow misuse of your car: Never let your car’s bonnet be used as a top or stand for lighting up crackers such as whistling rockets or sky shots. It may damage the paint and leave marks on the bonnet. So, never allow such things as it can be dangerous with fuel in the vehicle.
In India, one cannot carry firecrackers in public transport vehicles like buses, autorickshaws, etc. In the case of goods vehicles, the owner has to take prior permission from the authorities for transporting firecrackers.
So, the only option left is to transport firecrackers in your private car. However, it is not safe to carry such items in your vehicle as it can be dangerous. But if you are forced to do so, here are some precautions that you should follow while carrying firecrackers in your car.
Ensure proper packaging: Always ensure that the firecrackers are appropriately packed and are not exposed. If possible, it is better to transport it in spark-resistant boxes to avoid any chances of fire mishaps.
Do not smoke inside the vehicle: Never smoke inside the car when carrying firecrackers. Even the smallest of sparks can ignite the crackers, leading to a fatal fire accident.
Do not leave firecrackers in the car for a long time: It is not advisable to leave them inside the vehicle for prolonged periods. Especially if you reside in a hot and humid environment, the rise in temperature inside the car can ignite the firecrackers. So, shift them to a safe location as soon as you reach the destination.
If your car is damaged due to an unfortunate fire accident, you can apply for an insurance claim, provided you have purchased a Comprehensive Car Insurance Policy. Here are the steps to apply for a car insurance claim in case of vehicle damages due to a fire accident.
Step 1 - First of all, intimate your insurance provider about the damages to your car.
Step 2 - Raise a claim request with all the necessary documents.
Step 3 - The insurer will assess the damage and determine the cause of the fire accident. Provide all the correct information to the insurer for a smooth claim process.
Step 4 - If the claim is approved, the insurer will pay the repair expenses as per the policy coverage. In case of a total loss, your insurer will pay Insured Declared Value after considering deductibles as per policy terms.
Also, read: Is it a good idea to buy a car during Diwali?
Here are some of the commonly asked questions related to driving during the Diwali festival.
Driving over a firecracker is risky as it can damage the exterior of the car. In case of an exploding firecracker, it can damage the tyres, paint and can even cause dents. In the worst case, it can also cause fire accidents.Is it safe to keep firecrackers inside my car?
No, keeping firecrackers inside the car is not at all a good idea. The vehicle contains fluids such as fuel that can ignite easily. So, as soon as you reach the destination, shift the firecrackers from the car and store them safely.What type of damage can a firecracker do to my car?
The damage depends on the type of firecracker. Generally, it causes damage to the paint, dents or even cracks on the windshield. Some firecrackers can leave burning marks on the paint. In a worst-case scenario, it may also cause a fire accident.
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