The lately has been great for the kids, but for those of us that need to drive it has been terrible. Freezing cold and deep snow. I’ve seen people driving down the road peering through a tiny hole dug into the snow on their windscreen. That is not a safe way to drive.
So, with all the snow we have been having we thought we should offer some driving tips (courtesy of our RAC friends from over the pond).
Before you set out:
- Check tyre tread. Poor tyres do not grip when driving on snow and ice.
- If you live in an area where snow is common consider changing to winter tyres with deeper tread made from a compound with lower operating temperatures.
- Use a screen-wash that protects down to at least -35 to prevent the water from freezing.
- Allow more time in the morning to clear windows and mirrors of ice before setting off.
- Use lukewarm water or de-icer to defrost the outside of your vehicle. You should never use hot or boiling water
- Make sure wiper control is switched off before turning the ignition otherwise this could blow the wiper control fuse if they are frozen to the screen
- Remove snow from the roof of your car. Otherwise breaking sharply could cause snow to fall onto the windscreen and hamper your vision.
- And remember, you have to get home after your journey. Keep a snow shovel and a broom in the trunk to help you clear the snow when you set off for home at the end of the day.
- Consider using snow socks or snow chains.
The following tips should always be followed when driving in the snow:
- Accelerate gently, use low revs and change up to a higher gear as quickly as possible.
- You may need to move off in second gear as this will help reduce wheel slip
- Leave as much as 10 times the normal recommended gap between you and the car in front
- If you skid, steer gently into it. Do not take your hands off the steering wheel or stamp your foot on the brakes.
- If the road has not been gritted, beware driving in the wheel-tracks of other vehicles – compressed snow can be more icy than fresh snow
- Controls such as the brakes, as well as the steering, accelerator and even gear changing should be operated smoothly and slowly.
- Sunglasses can reduce glare from low winter sun on the snow.
- Keep your speed down and allow more time to stop and steer.
Please drive carefully and courteously. Be patient. It is more likely people will have broken down and roads could be choked or impassable. And when you get home, build a snow man or have a snow ball fight.