Unless you live somewhere that is relatively warm throughout the year, the likelihood is that you will need to prepare for driving in the winter weather. The roads can become extremely dangerous to drive on when black ice appears, or it begins to snow. Most accidents are caused at this time of year because people don’t take the necessary precautions before driving. There are a number of things you can do to stay safe on the road in the winter, and these are the most important.
Always Drive Carefully
One of the worst things you can do when the weather is bad is to drive fast as this is likely to cause an accident. When there is snow or ice on the road you will need to drive slowly and carefully to avoid losing control of the vehicle.You would be surprised at how easy it is for the wheels to spin when they hit a patch of ice. If you know you need to be somewhere for a certain time, always give yourself extra time to get there and leave early. It is also a good idea to leave a space of three times more than you usually would to help lower the risk of any accidents taking place.
Check Your Tyres
Most cars will be fitted with all-season or summer tyres for the most part of the year, but if you know you will be having a bad winter, it might be a good idea to buy some winter tyres. This is especially important if you know you will be doing a lot of driving in the future. Regular tyres won’t have enough grip when the roads become hazardous, which means you are more likely to slide when going around corners. They are by no means mandatory, but it is always better to be safe than sorry.
Go Easy on the Brakes
One of the things that people are afraid of is skidding and losing control on the ice or snow. It happens to many people and is the reason why sometimes cars slide into ditches or off the road. Not only that but if there are cars behind you it can cause them to have an accident as well. Braking too hard can cause you to slip on icy ground, so it is always better to incorporate slow driving with gentle braking. Also, make sure you aren’t accelerating quickly, as that too can be dangerous.
Carry A Breakdown Kit
Nobody knows when their car might breakdown and it can be even worse during the winter months. There is nothing worse than being stuck in a car when it is freezing outside, knowing that you can’t put the heating on as it will waste the gas. It is essential that you always carry a breakdown kit that includes, blankets, a flashlight, high-vis vest and a snow shovel for if you need to dig yourself out. It is also a good idea to have snow grips for shoes, food such as protein bars, and water.
Always Check the Weather
When you know you are going to be travelling a long distance, it is a good idea to make sure you are prepared. Look ahead and check the weather for where you are travelling to. Just because the conditions are good where you are, doesn’t mean they will be at your destination. You can keep an eye on the weather by downloading a weather app that can keep you up to date with the latest forecasts.
Don’t Drive Unless You Have To
When the weather is extreme, it is always important to remember that you shouldn’t drive anywhere unless you absolutely have to. A lot of schools and places to work will understand if you are unable to travel or if your car won’t start in the freezing conditions, and most of them will cancel all activities anyway.
Safety is your number one priority when driving in the winter weather and if you think you won’t be safe, don’t chance it.