The coronavirus pandemic brought the world to a standstill a month ago. With over 6.4 million people testing positive for the virus across the globe and more than 300K people succumbing to it, it was only natural for the world to lockdown like never before.
Only recently, many countries have relaxed the lockdown rules, because people had to go out for getting necessary supplies, hospital check-ups, reporting to work in exceptional cases and son. If you have also started to come out of the four walls of your house, it is important that you follow a list of safe driving instructions to stay away from corona.
Social distancing and washing your hands regularly with soap and alcohol-based sanitizer are the tips that you have been following at home. Have you ever wondered about the safety tips you have to follow while you are driving on the road in times of this pandemic? Here is a list of COVID Safety driving tips that you have to follow on the road:
- Keep a check on the routes and no. of passengers
In the days of this pandemic, you cannot take a risk with anything at all. Please take your car out, only if needed. Avoid traveling to many places along many routes to lessen the risk of getting infected.
Also, avoid traveling with other people if you want to keep yourself safe. It is always better that you are the only one who is in the car. The more people, the more germs you are carrying in your vehicle.
- Be extra cautious at gas stations
Fuel pumps and gas stations are a few of the places that are visited by a lot of people. Therefore, when you stop by at these places, you should step out only after wearing gloves and protective masks. Never touch anything here without wearing gloves.
At the time of payment, always opt for contactless payment, so that there are no chances of the germs passing on from others. Gas stations may not be very clean; hence, you should never touch anything here with your bare hands.
- Clean your hands regularly
When you get into your car from outside, you should clean your hand thoroughly with an alcohol-based sanitizer. Keep a bottle of sanitizer inside your car for this purpose. This way, you will not bring any germs from outside of your vehicle.
You may have touched quite a lot of surfaces that other people have touched previously. So, avoid the risk of infection by cleaning your hands thoroughly with soap or sanitizer.
- Disinfect your car thoroughly at regular intervals
Some parts of your car such as the dashboard, steering wheel, door handles, seatbelt, etc. are more prone to your touch than other parts. These high-touch areas should be disinfected regularly to avoid contamination caused by the spreading of germs.
It is highly recommended that you first clean the high-touch areas and the interiors of your car thoroughly with soap & water, before proceeding to disinfect them. This way, you can remove all contaminants completely.
- Be cautious about what you transport in your car
Even when you carry a grocery bag from outside, you are giving a chance for the coronavirus to enter your car and your homes. Hence, once you have taken the bag, you have to disinfect the area where the bag was kept thoroughly.
Before you take the bag into the house, you should also disinfect the bag thoroughly, to avoid spreading the germs through the air. This way, you can keep your homes safe from the entry of the virus.
- Insisting safety rules to fellow-passengers as well
You should avoid traveling with other people, especially in today’s world, where social distancing is the norm. However, if due to unavoidable and extremely important reasons, you have to travel with another person, you should insist that he follows all these safety rules as well.
He should refrain from touching the areas that are being handled by you. All his high-touch areas should be disinfected regularly to avoid any contamination.
- Use disinfecting wipes
While you may use a disinfectant spray regularly to keep your car clean, experts suggest that this alone may not be enough. This is because the anti-bacterial elements found in these sprays do not stay for a long time in the air.
This is why it is important to invest in a box of disinfecting wipes. Keep this box always in your car, and keep wiping high-touch areas frequently using these. Studies have proved that these wipes are quite effective in killing bacteria.
- Don’t share rides
At least until the serious effects of the pandemic subside, it is highly recommended that you don’t use shared-ride services such as Uber to travel to work. It is highly recommended that you drive alone in your car, even if that is going to cost you money.
However, if you have to share rides, you have to sanitize your hands regularly. You should also wear proper masks when you are traveling with others to avoid the spreading of germs.
- Leave car windows open for a few minutes between rides
It is believed that the novel coronavirus, which is the root cause for the global pandemic today, can live for up to 3 hours in the air. Therefore, ensure that you roll down the windows for a few minutes between your rides, to ensure that you don’t give enough time for the virus to settle down inside the vehicle.
- Follow all the latest COVID Safety guidelines
Keep looking out for all the latest safety guidelines released by WHO (World Health Organization) and CDC (Centres for Disease Control and Prevention) about drivel safely during the pandemic. This will help you to drive safely and stay away from the virus.
- Regulate the air circulation
You need to monitor the quality of air circulation inside the vehicle continuously. Please adjust your car’s settings accordingly to improve the quality of fresh air intake. This will keep the interiors free from germs and contaminants.
- Use PPE if necessary
While this is not mandatory, you could use personal protective equipment (PPE) if a doctor advises you. These include gloves, goggles and respiratory protection equipment. If there are lots of corona-affected people in your area, the local government may advise you to use it while stepping out.
Keep checking the latest guidelines from authorized agencies to know about the COVID safety tips and preventive measures that you need to follow while driving.