Tips for Driving During Winter Months
today at 12:00 pm
In many parts of the country winter will soon bare its ugly face, leaving in its wake snow, ice and cold. As the weather changes winter takes different forms. However, one thing is certain: Critical driving situations can, and do present themselves during these months.
The tire manufacturers and organizations such as Safer America offer helpful hints and driving tips to aid drivers when navigating snow and ice on the roads, particularly during holiday times.
It helps to keep in mind some of those tips when navigating a change in the weather:
*Check road conditions before traveling. Use extra caution when driving on bridges and overpasses; they freeze over first. Be aware of black ice, a condition that occurs when the road appears to be dry but is darker and shinier than usual. Slow down when driving through these areas.
*Always wear your seat belt! Three of five people killed in vehicle accident would have survived their injuries had they been wearing their seat belts. Children should sit in the rear seat. Infants weighing less than 20 pounds or under the age of one should be placed in a certified, rear-facing child safety seat. Children up to four years of age should be placed in a certified child safety seat.
*Plan ahead. If possible, use alternate routes when traveling to avoid sharp turns or steep hills, if possible.
*Prepare your vehicle for winter driving. Today’s vehicles have many safety features that prevent serious accidents when applied properly. Keep your vehicle’s tires properly inflated, including the spare. Check tread depth regularly for excessive wear. Balled tires are an extreme hazard on icy, snowy roads. Replace wiper blades as needed or every year and keep the windshield wiper reservoir filled.
*Take your time. Everything takes longer in slippery conditions—accelerating, stopping and turning. Avoid making any abrupt direction or steering changes, gradually accelerate, brake, steer. Allow for increased travel times.