Thursday, December 9, 2021

Winter Road Safety

When we first learn to drive, we are used to reasonable road conditions. Sure there might be a little bit of rain, but often that is nothing compared to what can happen over the winter for many.

Snowy and icy conditions will mean it takes you much longer to stop, so if you are used to driving at speed in the summer months, this is an adjustment you'll need to make pretty quickly.

Photo by JavyGo on Unsplash

Car checks

When it comes to keeping your car in tip-top condition for the winter, there are a few things that you can do.

  • Keep your car clean at all times; debris and dirt can gather on your lights, windows, and mirrors.

  • Check that your tires always have plenty of treads and that they are the correct pressure.

  • Depending on the country, you reside in, you might need to switch out your regular tires for winter tires.

  • Keep your fuel tank as complete as possible; you never know when you might get stuck or delayed in bad weather.

  • Avoid using hot water to defrost your windows; only use a specialized antifreeze product

  • Ensure that you have sufficient antifreeze in the radiator of your car and excess windscreen washer bottles available.

Winter driving tips

The winter weather brings a lot of low-lying sun glare from puddles and sleepier road conditions, typically less visibility due to fog, and the high chance of rain, snow, and other severe weather. 

  • Try to leave a little earlier, so you are not tempted to speed on any journeys.

  • Always leave a greater than usual distance between yourself and the car in front of you. You can increase the two-second rule to 4 seconds for safety. 

  • Always ensure your mobile phone is fully charged should you need it.

  • Let your car heat up sufficiently before you begin your journey.

  • Plan your route, and if possible, let somebody know what time you are due to arrive

  • When in doubt, take a second longer or more to decide when it comes to overtaking all the vehicles or if you don't have good visibility.

  • Use the highest gear possible to avoid wheelspin on icy roads. 

  • Be sure to maneuver more gently than you would and avoid harsh acceleration or braking.

  • If you feel the car start to slide, gently ease off the accelerator, but do not be tempted to slam your brakes on.

In case of an accident  

Accidents do happen in cars, so you must have a set of tools and more in the boot of your vehicle. Ensure you have flashlights, flashlight batteries, and a spare flashlight. 

You should also have the numbers of any emergency contacts you're going to need, For example, the babysitter who is currently taking care of your children, a car crash lawyer, your work, and any other contacts.

It is also essential that you have some first aid kits in your car to be as prepared as possible. 

There are other car safety things you can do for your children; check out: Here's How To Guarantee Your Car Is Safe For The Kids.

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