Tips for Driving in Snow

February 1st, 2016 by

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Tips for Driving in Snow

What you Need to Know to be Safe and Prepared

Winter time is a wonderful time of year where the landscape changes completely especially when the snow begins to fall. Last year we saw a number of significant snow falls that caused a significant amount of upset across the United States. There were a number of reports of people stranded on roadways having to find ways home and in some cases having to spend the night in their cars. As scary as that may sound winter is upon us once again and the amount of snowfall this year is estimated to be more than that of last year, but there is no need to worry when you know how to prepare for and drive in snow and icy conditions.

Keep your Distance

Even when driving in regular conditions it is recommended to keep a three car distance between you and the driver ahead, but many of us do not follow this rule thinking that we are getting somewhere faster. The truth is you are only going to go as fast as the person ahead of you and getting too close to them is only putting you in danger of an accident. When snow is added into the picture the decision to follow someone too close increases your chances of an accident.

Snow and ice are slick substances and even if you are equipped with snow tires it is vital that you give adequate space between you and the other car. With the standard driving rule of 3 car lengths being in place, when the snow falls you may want to increase that distance by one or two additional car lengths. This will give you ample space in which to stop the car even if you slide a little.

Respect Bridges

The mere fact that a bridge is suspended in air makes it more vulnerable to freezing than your standard roadway. The roads are directly on the ground which gives them longer time to freeze than a bridge. Even if the roadways are completely clear, if there is moisture in the air at all a bridge can freeze. If you are driving and approaching a bridge it is recommended that you apply the brakes before you come to the bridge. Slowing down while applying the brakes when you are already on the bridge can lead to a severe accident and an accident on a bridge is far more dangerous than simply running off the road.

No Cruise Control

Many of us will use the cruise control when we are driving to make it a little more convenient. Cruise control is designed for dry conditions. The act of disabling the cruise control by tapping the brakes can send your car out of control in icy conditions. It is recommended that you do not even use your cruise control in extremely cold conditions because if you come in contact with a patch of ice anywhere on the road you are at a greater risk of losing control.

Stranded on the Roadway

No one wants to think that they could one day be stranded in their car with no way to get home. It has happened to many people and is likely to happen at some point. It is best to be prepared for every scenario. The first step when you are stranded is to call for help. Call 911 and tell them where you are. Sometimes they can get to you and sometimes they may not be able to, but giving them you exact location will help them find you.

If they are unable to find you or get to you, you may have to spend the night in your vehicle and in that case there are some things that you need to have on hand before you become stranded. Preparation is the best way to survive the situation.

Food – You will get hungry. Ensure that you have a supply of high calorie nonperishable foods that can be eaten as is. Also you need a supply of water within your vehicle to ensure that you are adequately hydrated.

Charger – Your cell phone will be your only means of communication and you need a way to keep the battery power up.

Blankets – It will get cold and you cannot run the heat in your car all night unless you have a backup supply of gas.

These are only a few recommendations of things you will need in your car, but to truly be ready for the snow, you should have your vehicle properly serviced and maintained by a certified professional mechanic. Bill Delord servicing department is your one stop shop for everything you need to prepare your vehicle for winter. We service all surrounding areas of Dayton, Cincinnati, Middletown, Xenia, Wilmington, and Hamilton. Bring your vehicle to the winterization specialists at Bill Delord for a comprehensive inspection and winter preparation to keep you safe and on the road all winter. We look forward to seeing you soon.

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