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Travel and car safety tips for the road this holiday season

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Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

Traveling during the holiday season? You won’t be alone according to the American Automobile Association.

Spokesman Daniel Armbruster said 8.1 million mountain region residents, which New Mexico is a part of, are expected to hit the road during the year-end holiday, which starts Saturday and runs through Jan. 1.

“Most of that will be automobile,” he said. “That will be 7.2 million (people), which is up from 3.2 percent (from last year).”

He added that travel by air, bus and rail is expected to be up from last year as well.

What about gas prices?

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“For New Mexico and most of the United States, we’re anticipating gas prices will continue in a downward trend,” he said.

“Most market analysts think the economy is strong,” he added.

Another important item, according to Armbruster, is to “make sure your vehicle is road-trip ready.

“Make sure tires are properly inflated and have a good amount of tread on them. Under the hood, make sure everything looks good from the belts to the hoses and make sure the fluid levels are topped off,” he added.

Meanwhile, the Roswell Police Department’s Criminal Investigation Division is offering some vehicle security and safety tips.

They ask that you lock your car door anytime you are away from your car.

With the changing of seasons, they say it is very tempting to start your car and let it warm up or cool down. If you don’t have auto-start and you leave the keys in the vehicle, this drastically increases the chances of your car being stolen.

Another key reminder, do not leave valuables inside your vehicle. Loose change, phones, purses, wallets, GPS devices, tablets, computers, Christmas gifts or other valuable items are just inviting someone to break into your vehicle. Never leave a firearm unattended in your vehicle.

Remember that your vehicle registration has your address on it. Please keep your registration and insurance paperwork secure.

They also ask that you park in an area where your vehicle is visible and well lit if possible. A thief does not want to be seen.

Another reminder, have your keys ready to get in your car and lock the doors as soon as you enter the vehicle. Fumbling for your keys gives a thief time to approach you. Also, have your keys for your house or business ready before you get out of your locked car. Again, don’t get caught off-guard fumbling with keys.

Finally, they ask that you use common sense. If something does not seem right, go to a safe area and call 911. They said it is not a bother for police to respond. RPD would rather respond and prevent something from happening than to respond to a crime that has already been committed.

General assignment reporter Mike Smith can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 307, or at sports2@rdrnews.com.

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