Holiday travel tips

Photo Credit: File video

In the next couple of days, cars will head out in droves to get to their destinations for Thanksgiving.

This year in particular, more families are expected to drive to their destination than fly.

That's why it's important for you drivers to pay attention at the task at hand, which is driving your car.

And before you head out on the highway, KHQA found out some information you may not have heard before.

Travel these days without a GPS unit is almost unheard of. But did you know in some states, it's illegal to have anything with a screen in the front seat, or suction cupped to your windshield? That's the case in California and Minnesota, if your travels take you there. Closer to home in Illinois, anything with a screen, like DVD player or TV is illegal in the front seat of your car.

"Your GPS's are real comparable with the phone. They speak to you, so as long as your not watching the GPS, you can still listen to the GPS. We don't want people to turn around and look at a GPS in the backseat. The GPS, iphone, ipod can be allowed," says Trooper Mike Kindhart with the Illinois State Police.

Something else that may help your travels is the company you keep. Undoubtedly, many people travel with family, and members of the family can help keep everyone safe.

"As passengers, we can help our drivers by adjusting radio stations or not being loud and try not to be a distraction for that driver," says Sgt. Brent Bernhardt with the Missouri Highway Patrol.

That also includes helping with the GPS or maps if you still use them. Also, if you must eat while on the road, a passenger can be a big help unwrapping sandwiches or whatever. Also, keep an eye on the weather. Not just the weather where you are, but where you're going.

"Be aware of the weather conditions that can pop up. Make sure your vehicle is in good mechanical condition for winter travel," says Sgt. Bernhardt.

Another thing to watch for this time of year, deer.

"If you see a deer on the highway, treat it like a slow moving vehicle. Slow down immediately. Not just when you get up on it," says Trooper Kindhart.

Trooper Kindhard also reminds you not to swerve to miss a deer, because that could cause you to crash or hit another car. He says it may be a good idea to honk your horn or flash your lights at the deer to scare it. Just keep in mind, that may spook the deer to run right into your path.

Another helpful tip, if you're driving in an unfamiliar area, and you have car trouble.

Trooper Mike Kindhart tells KHQA, you can always dial 9-1-1.

Just tell the dispatcher when they answer, that you are not having an emergency, but you need help.