Drivers have been urged to adjust their driving habits to meet the demands of the festive season's busy road conditions.

Drivers have been urged to adjust their driving habits to meet the demands of the festive season's busy road conditions.

General manager of MasterDrive, Jacobs said holidaymakers should make allowances for changing traffic patterns. He said that very often, collisions were the result of drivers not maintaining safe following distances.

"In South Africa, as in the rest of the world, the single biggest cause of collisions is the lack of an adequate following distance. The minimum safe following distance is three seconds,” Jacobs said.

“Check your following distance by using the time-lapse method. As the vehicle in front of you passes a fixed object such as a telephone pole, count off the seconds it takes you to reach the same object. If you get there before you've counted to at least three, you're too close," he said.

Heavily laden vehicles and distractions often caused by bored and frustrated child passengers exacerbate this bad driving habit.

Jacobs cautioned: “If you are driving with children, avoid giving them sugary snacks, fizzy drinks or any foodstuffs with tartrazine. These will only make them hyperactive.

“Keep them occupied and, wherever possible, pull over and allow them to stretch their legs for five minutes.”

MasterDrive offers driving instruction ranging from advanced driver training to hijack prevention and also provides pre-employment driver assessments for company fleets.