Winter Driving Tips

01/30/2009 | Auto, Semi & Motorcycle Wrecks

  1. Driving too fast for conditions.  Regardless of whether you are in a four-wheel or two-wheel drive car, ice is ice and 4 wheels slide just as easy as 2.
  2. Following other vehicles too closely.
  3. Overcorrecting on ice.  Learn how to control a skid. If you're traveling in a straight line, stay calm, take your foot off the gas and brake gently. Turn the steering wheel in the direction you want to go. If you slip on a corner, smoothly accelerate to transfer the weight to the rear wheels, which allows you to steer into the direction of the skid and regain control.
  4. Driving while tired.
  5. Driving with poor visibility.
  6. Driving on back roads.  When possible, stick to roads that are regularly treated.
  7. Not getting the car ready for winter.  Be sure to have tires properly inflated and some kitty litter or gravel for traction in case you get stuck in the snow.
  8. Failure to carry emergency gear. warm clothing like coats, hats, gloves and socks; flares; chains; matches in a waterproof container; long-lasting food like nuts, jerky, dried fruit or granola bars; water; kitty litter or sand for traction on slippery surfaces; jumper cables; a shovel; a cellphone; a first-aid kit; a flashlight; and a spare tire
  9. Leaving the car if you're stranded.  If the car is stalled and there's no help in sight, stay with the vehicle (unless it's in the road). It'll be the warmest, safest place to wait until help arrives. Run the engine 10 minutes each hour for heat, and clear the exhaust pipe of snow, ice or mud. Place flares about 50 feet in front of and behind the car, turn on hazard lights and, if it's not snowing, raise the hood to indicate you need help.
  10. Failing to check weather conditions before you leave.  If you must travel in poor weather conditions, be sure to tell a friend or family member where you are going, what route you intend to take, and when you plan to arrive.  That way, if something happens and you don't arrive on time, they'll know what route to check.

Hope these winter drving tips keep you safe and sound this season.

Hans