Now that the snow has arrived, it can lead to treacherous driving conditions and – potentially – collisions. The Canada Safety Council has these top seven tips for safer winter driving. Take note!
Tip #1 Prepare your vehicle for winter driving
- Get snow tires for better traction on snow and ice
- Have a good snow brush and ice scrapper
- Have an emergency kit that includes a lightweight shovel, battery booster cables, and a flashlight
- Clear off the snow and ice off the windshield, windows, mirrors, roof, hood and trunk
Tip # 2 Drive smoothly and drive slowly
- Avoid abrupt turns and sudden stops to prevent skidding
- Slow down – driving too fast is the number one cause of winter accidents
Tip #3 Leave plenty of room
- Don’t tailgate the vehicle in front of you.
- Stopping on snow and ice takes longer than on dry pavement
- Leave yourself enough room for safe stopping
Tip #4 Brake before you make a turn
- Brake slowly to reduce speed before entering turns.
- Accelerate after rounding the corner
Tip # 5 Know how to recover from skids
- When in a skid in an all wheel drive or rear wheel drive vehicle, steer into the skid. This means to turn towards where the back of the car is sliding. Your instincts will tell you to steer this way to correct it. For front wheel drive vehicles, keep the steering straight. Go against your instincts and accelerate -not brake – to regain control.
Tip #6 Light em’ up!
- Turn on your lights to increase your visibility to pedestrians and other motorists
Tip #7 Be alert and pay attention
- Manoeuvres are more difficult to make in the snow
- Anticipate what your next move is going to be to give yourself lots of room for turns and stopping
- Be aware of what the vehicles around you are doing.