Driving during the winter months can be dangerous, particularly during periods of the bad weather that can strike our region, with very little warning. Being a safe driver during winter will require care, skill, and even more attention to the road than at other times of year.
By committing to safe driving, you are greatly reducing your chances of car accidents, which often skyrocket in periods of bad winter weather. Your responsibility behind the wheel might not only save you a lot of shock and worry, but also a lot of money on your auto insurance premiums. Consider a few safe driving tips to remember this time of year.
#1: Good Tires Are Your First Line of Defense
In any period of bad weather, your tires need to be able to grip the road appropriately. If they have worn treads or improper air pressure, then they will make it harder for you to control the car, and your traction will decrease. Periodically check your tire pressure and your tread depths to ensure your tires are in prime shape.
#2: Saving Space Between Vehicles Increases Safety
You cannot hit another vehicle if you have plenty of space between you and those with whom you share the road. Generally, it is recommended that you keep at least two to three car lengths behind the vehicle in front of you. However, in winter weather, consider leaving even more space, to allow for additional stopping room.
#3: Put Both Hands on the Wheel
When you learned to drive, you were probably told that you should keep both hands on the wheel at all times. Of course, many of us have let that one rule of the road lapse. However, during the winter, always keep both hands on the wheel. This will help you keep more firm control over the car and prevent you from making sudden movements that could cause you to lose control.
#4: Be Aware of the Conditions Around You
During the winter, heavy precipitation and longer hours of darkness increase your risks of accidents. If you have to drive in wintry conditions, always give yourself the benefit of extra space and lower speed. Be on the lookout for black ice and puddles of water that could increase your risk of hydroplaning, too.
#5: Slow Down And Be Patient
Speed is the enemy in the winter, whether you are driving on traffic-filled roads, or a clear stretch of rural highway. The faster you go, the lower your ability to control the car will be, and the higher your risk of accidents, too. Therefore, always maintain an appropriate speed this time of year, and keep that tip in mind anytime, as well.
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