It’s that time of the year when the winter storms are coming! We wanted to share just a few winter driving tips with you! Some of the following winter driving tips can help you stay in control of your vehicle while driving during winter conditions!
Driving on ICE
When driving on icy road conditions you will want to be careful and be cautious as “black” ice can form on the roads. “Black” ice is clear and are most commonly occur around dawn and late evening when the temperature is lowest. Low temperature causes precipitation to freeze when it hits the road which in turn creates ice. Sleet and snow that has frozen again can also generate black ice. Be very aware of black ice especially on bridges and elevated roadways.
It is important to know how your vehicle responds on ice. Do not over-correct with your steering wheel and panic braking.
If you encounter black ice…
Do not slam on your brakes
Take your foot off the gas pedal
Steer in the direction you would like your vehicle to go
Once the car has slowed down and the wheels are able to get traction you will be able to regain control
Always be sure to leave plenty of space between you and other drivers in the incident that they are not able to control their vehicle.
Driving in SNOW
Varying types of snow can cause different driving conditions. If it is large, wet snowflakes it can pile up and can cause slippery road surfaces. If there are small, light snowflakes visibility can be reduced and ice can build on windshields and other surfaces.
Be sure to slow down as snow can be just as slippery as ice. You will also want to increase your following distance between other drivers. Your ability to brake can be affected even in light snow. When driving on a snow covered hill be sure to take is slow and have enough braking capability to stop safely. It is also recommended to leave at least 3-4 vehicle lengths between you and other cars to best avoid a collision.
Driving in WHITEOUT CONDITIONS
In the Midwest we are accustom to whiteout conditions in the winter. Visibility becomes reduced when snow gets very heavy and you may only be able to see just a few feet in front of your vehicle and are unable to see the lane markings on the road. Make sure that you are driving slow enough to have time to brake or move if somethings happen in front of your vehicle.
It is also important to make sure that you make yourself visible on the roadways. Use all of your headlights and turn on your fog lights if you have them. Hazard lights may be needed if you are driving below the speed limit and want to alert other drivers. Tip 2 – Make yourself as visible as possible. Always make sure that you communicate your intentions when changing lanes or turning so that those around you can see you and adjust their driving as well.
If the whiteout conditions become too hazardous to drive in look for the nearest exit and find a safe place to wait out the storm. If you do not have that option you may pull to the side of the road, turn on your hazard lights, and wait it out. Make sure to keep your car running to remain heated but make sure your continually check your exhaust pipe and make sure it is not covered by snow and that your window is cracked to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
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