Winter driving can be very intimidating. It’s not on the list of one of the most favorite things to do, but it is the reality of living in Canada. Here are some tips to help gain confidence when winter driving:
-The most important: reduce your speed and drive carefully on snow and ice covered roads; basically adjust your speed and maneuvers according to road conditions.
Here is an infographic on stopping distances so it gives you an idea how many meters it takes your vehicles to stop in winter weather, whether you have winter or all season tires.
-Don’t make any abrupt turns or stops when driving. Try to avoid sudden braking in winter weather, when it comes to turns and braking, do so in a straight line before the turn, gradually. Try your best to avoid braking during the turn. Brake slowly to reduce speed before entering turns.
– Don’t tailgate. Don’t tailgate in general. Stopping takes much longer on snowy and icy roads. Winter tires do not give you permission to tailgate. Increase your following distance from other cars significantly.
** Here’s an insurance tip for you. Insurance companies pull random MVR’s. If you have a “driving too closely” conviction, they are going to inquire if you have had an accident. Why? In all likelihood, you have received that conviction because you rear-ended someone. And really, people don’t like it when you are too close to the back end of their vehicle.
– Avoid using cruise control.
– If your vehicle is equipped with an anti-lock braking system (ABS), do not “pump” the brakes.
– Check road and weather conditions before leaving your home.
– Be able to see out of your vehicle and be seen. Clear all snow from the hood, roof, windows and lights, clearing all windows of fog or ice.
– Drive with two hands always.
– Try to avoid changing lanes in slush.
These are just a few tips and reminders to adjust your driving on snow and icy roads. Click on this link to more information on winter driving safety. A great idea is to take a winter driving or skid control course if one is available in your area.