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According to the 2000 census, more than 112 million people drive or carpool to work daily.

With all these people on the road, drivers need to take every precaution to ensure they arrive safely at their destinations. Here are some tips to heed in your travels.

* Keep your vehicle properly maintained. Follow the recommended service intervals found in your vehicle owner's manual, always monitor hoses and belts, and check filters, spark plugs and fluids. Also, be sure tires are properly inflated and gas levels are sufficient.

* Carry an emergency kit. In addition to standards such as a first aid kit and battery jumper cables, consider adding the Autolite TriGlo safety light to your vehicle emergency kit. Powered by four AA batteries, this compact light serves a dual purpose: It shines like a flashlight and alerts like a flare. Triangular in shape, the TriGlo light can be used as a bright spotlight or as a blinking safety triangle to warn oncoming traffic of a motorist's presence.

* Buckle up. When lap and shoulder belts are used correctly, they reduce the risk of fatal injury to front-seat passengers by 45 percent and the risk of moderate to critical injury by 50 percent.

* Know your route. Before hitting the road, take the time to map out your route. Motor clubs such as AAA provide auto travelers with maps and detailed directions to their destinations. Be aware of traffic, construction and weather advisories along your route so you can make alternate plans should these conditions affect your drive.

* Reduce driver distraction. Traffic, construction and careless drivers are distractions beyond your control. However, you can reduce the risk of an accident by decreasing the distractions inside your vehicle.

For instance, to avoid the glare from overhead lights used by your passengers, consider a product such as the Autolite SpotGlo seatbelt light source. This compact, battery-operated recessed light clips easily onto a passenger's seatbelt and slides smoothly on the strap for desired positioning. It directs a powerful LED light source right where passengers need it, without distracting the driver.

No matter where you're headed, heed these suggestions to arrive safely at your destination. Happy travels!  - NU

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