Every time we get on the road, we are taking a risk. That risk increases in winter weather conditions, namely slippery layers of ice on the street. Even for the most experienced drivers, driving with ice on the road can be a huge challenge. For many people, that challenge can result in injuries, or in a worst-case scenario, death.
While it is important to keep yourself while driving all the time, it is especially important during the winter season. The list below gives you all the information you need to keep yourself safe if you find yourself driving during winter weather conditions.
Take it Easy and Leave Early
While it may be easier said than done, one of the best things you can do yourself during the winter season is to relax. Elevated emotions can make your driving erratic, which opens up the possibility of an accident — especially if the roads are snowy or icy. Whenever you have to travel, make sure to leave early. If you’re rushing to get to your destination, you’re more prone to an accident due to your stressed, emotional state and rushed driving. You may also find it helpful to leave early during the winter months because traffic is likely to be bad due to the road conditions.
Use Your Low Beams
This tip is especially beneficial for those living in areas with extreme weather conditions. Snow makes it difficult to see, and you don’t want an accident to happen because another driver does not see you on the road. To keep this from happening, keep on your low beam headlights on during the day so that others on the road are aware of your presence. If you’re out driving in a particularly bad snowstorm or blizzard, you may find it more useful to turn on your high beams.
Keep Your Distance
You may have never thought about this before, but it takes much longer to stop on an icy road than a dry road. When evaluating your stopping distance, make sure to take longer than you normally would in other circumstances. No one wants an accident to happen because you misjudged your stopping distance.
Keep the Essentials with You
Even if you have a ton of experience driving in winter weather conditions, you never know what could happen. In the event of an emergency, you do not want to be caught unprepared. Make sure to keep safety essentials like flashlights, jumper cables, ice scrapers, blankets, and food in your vehicle. These items may just end up saving your life in an emergency situation. Your future self will thank you.
Wait it Out
When in doubt, wait it out! Your safety is always the number one priority, and sometimes it may make more sense to wait until the extreme weather conditions subside before you get on the road. No matter what the situation, your destination can wait — your health can’t.