You can keep yourself safe and your mind at ease by following a few simple winter time driving safety protocols. They can be particularly useful in icy and snowy environments. Driving in the snow can daunt most drivers and can be a harrowing experience. The surprising fact is that most people remain unprepared to drive during hostile conditions. Here is a list of top ten tips for safe winter driving, that you should stick to:
1. Drive slowly and take more time in hand when you start: It could seem evident, but this point cannot be highlighted enough: you must slow down when you are driving on icy roads and through snowy conditions. Start from your place of departure a little early, and give yourself extra time so that you arrive safely.
2. Accelerate slowly: When you press the accelerator pedal, apply gentle and even pressure. It will prevent the wheels of your vehicle from spinning.
3. Slow down and then brake: Similar to acceleration, slowing down your vehicle gradually will assist to prevent your vehicle from skidding. Apply gradual and gentle pressure to the brake pedal.
4. Remove the ice and snow from your vehicle: Do take the time to remove ice and snow from the car lights, windows and most important of all, the wipers. As a driver, you should have a clear and complete view of the road to ensure that you stay safe from accidents. It is also advisable to drive at a slow speed on icy tracks.
5. Good tires: It is preferable that you use snow tires during winter. These special tires can make your driving much safer, not only in winter, but all throughout the year. A sufficient tread makes a significant positive difference. If you want to stay safe, consider investing in top quality tires.
6. Heating and cooling system: Ensure that your car's heating and cooling system works the way it is supposed to function. The system must be efficient. You could go for a coolant flush to increase the efficiency of the HVAC system.
7. Emergency kit: There are times when the chances of meeting an accident are high; winters call for drivers to be careful on the road. Having an emergency kit handy can come in very useful if your car breaks down in freezing winter or skids off the road. Your emergency kit must include an ice scraper, brush and snow shovel. A blanket and jumper cables are the other vital accessories.
8. Washer fluid and winter wiper blades: You need to keep your vehicle windscreen free of ice and snow to ensure better visibility. Winter blades are ideal for keeping ice from accumulating on the windscreen. The aim of the winter washer fluid is to keep liquids from freezing, thereby improving the visibility.
9. Do not turn on the cruise control: Activating cruise control in icy conditions will push your vehicle to a side if it hits ice. It is better to switch the mode off during winter.
10. Completely fuelled up gas tank: It is advisable to keep your fuel tank completely full or at least partially full so that you can reach your destination even if you encounter obstacles on your usual route and are forced to take a long route. If you are driving in urban areas, do anticipate the occurrence of black ice. It can be found under the bridges, tunnels, intersections and in any shaded area. Ice may appear only a little wet or dry in such an environment, but can result in accidents if you collide with it.