JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – Thanksgiving and Christmas are busy times when it comes to traveling to see friends and family, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advised Americans not to travel this year for the Thanksgiving holiday.
Coronavirus cases surged in America after Memorial Day, the Fourth of July and Labor Day. Health experts said the cases could surge again after Thanksgiving.
According to AAA, flights are expected to be down by nearly half this Thanksgiving compared to prior years. At least 2.4 million people are expected to fly. AAA also projects 47.8 million people will be driving to their Thanksgiving destinations this year.
With so much travel, a car care expert from ‘Mr. Transmission’ provides safe tips for the road and to help cut down on virus exposure.
- Wipe it Down – Carry a packet of disinfecting wipes and frequently clean common touchpoints such as the steering wheel, door handles, seat belts and buckles, keys and fobs, window button, radio and climate control buttons, and more. According to a survey by CarRentals.com, there are roughly 700 different strains of bacteria living in the average vehicle and the average steering wheel is four times dirtier than a public toilet seat.
- Create a Safety Kit – Pack face masks, disinfecting wipes, hand sanitizer and a thermometer to help protect and monitor your health. Bring water and extra snacks to reduce the need to stop during your trip.
- Sanitizer: Don’t Leave Home Without It – Carry a small bottle of hand sanitizer and use it every time you enter the car. This is an especially important practice after stopping for a bathroom break or touching a pump handle and buttons at a gas station.
- Know Before You Go – Research the state and local regulations along your route and at your planned destination to learn about any travel restrictions that may be in place.
- Care for Your Car – Prior to any long road trip, it is important to check each of the car’s vital engine fluids such as transmission, coolants, braking and steering on a regular basis. Most critical is to have the engine’s oil replaced every 3,000 miles. Also check the vehicle’s battery (most have a lifespan of 4-5 years), air filter (should be changed every 15,000 miles) and make sure the tires are properly inflated.
The country is potentially looking at the largest one-year travel decline since the 2008 recession.
Travelers make note that you can enter your starting point and destination into the AAA website and click the “COVID-19 Travel Restrictions” button to see whether mask and quarantine mandates are enforced at the location.