East Tennessee is a beautiful hidden gem full of mountain ranges, rolling hills and flowing rivers. It’s no wonder countless tourists flock to the state every year to take in the area’s natural aura.
But regardless if they are locals or visitors, motorists may want to consider taking precautions when driving through the region.
Safety tips for drivers
As Chattanooga sits at the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, those planning on driving through the mountains may want to know how to safely navigate them:
- Be aware of overheating engines: Vehicles often use a lot of horsepower when going uphill. Unfortunately, this can cause them to overheat in some cases. If this happens, drivers may want to switch into a lower gear so they can maintain a steady pace and turn off air conditioning to preserve power.
- Use lower gears when going downhill: Driving downhill can be just as daunting as going up. Drivers should shift into a lower gear like L or 2 on their trip down instead of pumping the breaks, as doing so could damage them. The National Park Service says if drivers catch a pungent smell coming from their vehicle, it may be a sign that their breaks are burning.
- Pay extra attention to the road: Mountain roads have a reputation for being curvy and narrow. These conditions can often make it difficult for drivers to see what’s around the corner, whether it be other vehicles, construction projects, falling rocks or animals crossing the roadways. In these instances, drivers may want to give other cars extra space on the road and avoid accelerating around blind curves.
- Have a physical map on hand: People nowadays often use their phones or a GPS to assist them with directions. However, the National Park Service warns cellphone signals may not be reliable in mountainous ranges. That’s why they suggest picking up a physical map. These maps can help drivers find the safest path to get to their destination.
Mountain car crashes can be dangerous
Despite the breathtaking views, driving in and around the mountains can be hazardous if drivers don’t proceed with caution. Motorists who were critically injured driving in and around the mountains may want to speak with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney. They can help evaluate their claim and see if they qualify for compensation.