The holiday season has passed, but winter is only beginning. January and February mark the dead of winter, when many drivers are subject to the whims of the weather. Blizzards, freezing rain, and shockingly low temperatures can all take their toll on a vehicle and potentially endanger the life of the vehicle’s driver. Safe winter driving can minimize the threat posed by hazardous weather.
The key to staying safe on the roads in the winter, above all else, is to stay on top of routine vehicle maintenance. The last thing you need while you’re out and about is for an old battery to die or your defroster to quit working properly. Keep in mind that cars often don’t function as well in low temperatures.
Other quick tips include not using cruise control in slippery road conditions, keeping your gas tank full to prevent ice formation in the tank, and not stopping if you don’t have to. Accelerate and decelerate slowly, as slamming on the brakes or flooring the gas pedal can cause your car to slip or skid, and also avoid stopping on hills.
Above all else, staying home is the safest option in the event of hazardous road conditions. However, many drivers have places to be and prior appointments and obligations, so safe winter driving is the best backup plan.