Transportation - Winter Driving Tips
Wintry roadways pose hazards that are hard to avoid, even for seasoned drivers. The most common cause of a workplace death, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, is a motor vehicle accident.
Some drivers seem especially vulnerable to a false sense of security when driving in the snow. To avoid this complacency, drivers should think of roads as two lane ice rinks.
Another class of bravado driving involves four-wheel drive owners, who seem to believe they’re driving indestructible tanks. While four-wheel drive gives extra traction when starting in deep snow, it does not help in stopping. In fact, it can be even more dangerous than two-wheel drive when brakes are applied fast and hard on ice or packed snow by doubling the number of sliding wheels.
The single most important thing that anybody can do is slow down.
- Clear all windows before driving.
- Turn on headlights.
- Lower speed 5 mph for every hazardous condition: snowing (-5), road covered (-5), poor visibility (-5), icy (-5). Too slow? Get off the road.
- Don’t use cruise control.
- Keep at least four seconds between you and the car ahead.
- Don’t pass winter road crews.
- Listen to weather updates.
- Stay home, play Scrabble instead.