Winter Safety Driving Tips

posted Nov 29, 2013, 7:19 PM by   [ updated Apr 29, 2018, 6:29 PM by Westwood City Clerk ]
1.  Accelerate and decelerate slowly. Applying the gas slowly to accelerate is the best method for regaining traction and avoiding skids. Don’t try to get moving in a hurry. And take time to slow down for a stoplight. Remember: It takes longer to slow down on icy roads.

2.  Don’t power up hills. Applying extra gas on snow-covered roads just starts your wheels spinning. Try to get a little inertia going before you reach the hill and let that inertia carry you to the top. As you reach the crest of the hill, reduce your speed and proceed down hill as slowly as possible. 

3.  If inclement weather is expected during the time you plan to travel, change your schedule. It is better to reschedule your get-togethers than to risk lives.

4.  Plan travel ahead of time; taking route, weather, time of day, possible traffic/delays, and rest breaks in to account.

5.  Keep your gas tank at least half full to avoid gas line freeze-up.

6.  Always look and steer where you want to go.

7.  If you become snow-bound, stay with your vehicle. It provides temporary shelter and makes it easier for rescuers to locate you. Don’t try to walk in a severe storm. It’s easy to lose sight of your vehicle in blowing snow and become lost.

8.  Stay home. If you really don’t have to go out, don’t. Even if you can drive well in the snow, not everyone else can. Don’t tempt fate: If you don’t have somewhere you have to be, watch the snow from indoors.

9.  Know your brakes. Whether you have antilock brakes or not, the best way to stop is threshold breaking. Keep the heel of your foot on the floor and use the ball of your foot to apply firm, steady pressure on the brake pedal.

10.  Use extra caution when driving over bridges ramps and overpasses, as they will likely freeze first.