Driving through winter storms and bad weather can be dangerous — even for a seasoned driver. A study by AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reveals that driving through severe weather and sloppy road conditions contributes to almost 500,000 crashes and over 2,000 deaths every winter.
Here are some crucial cold weather driving tips to keep in mind during winter road trips:
Winterize Your Car
Ensure you have winterized your vehicle adequately. Take your vehicle for a maintenance checkup that ensures every component is working optimally. Areas to focus on including your vehicle’s tires and tire pressures, belt and hoses, battery, oil, lights, exhaust system, heater/defrosters, wipers, ignition system, and brakes. You should also ensure the gas tank is at least half full before embarking on your trip.
Important tip: Equip your car with chains or snow tires when driving through roads that have remnants of snow and ice. Ideally, snow tires tend to slide on ice, and chains can effectively prevent your vehicle from getting stuck on ice.
It is often recommended to drive at a slower speed when navigating through snow and freezing rain. Drive accelerating and decelerating slowly to avoid loss of control. Driving at high speeds may cause the car to lose traction resulting in accidents. Ideally, slowing down enables you to get a feel of the road and test your steering control and braking capabilities. When stopping or turning, ensure that you brake gently to ease the car to a slow stop rather than a sudden halt.
Keep Adequate Distance
An important tip to follow when driving through stormy winter is to stay at least 3 to 4 seconds behind the vehicle you are following. However, when driving on ice or snow, increase this distance to at least 6 to 8 seconds. Besides, when following another person, you must stay alert. Importantly, don’t drive while distracted. Safe driving in snow is all about paying attention to your immediate surroundings.
Refrain from Using Cruise Control
Using the cruise control when driving on ice and snow is not recommended. Cruise control means you are not entirely in control of your vehicle, and you risk losing control quickly to cause an accident. Remember always to turn off the cruise control when driving in winter conditions.
Finally, before you get behind your vehicle, always check the weather ahead and adequately plan your route.
Rely on Sterling Limousine & Transportation Services for Safe Travel All Year Long
When you’ve got to hit the road during inclement weather, turning to skilled drivers is the absolute best way to ensure comfort, security, and timeliness. At Sterling Limousine & Transportation Services, our drivers are experienced in navigating all sorts of precipitation, potential hazards, and road conditions. For safe, reliable, and luxurious transportation services, or for more information about our fleet of high-end vehicles, reach out to our team today!