As stressful as being a new driver can be, make sure to stay safe this winter with these top 8 tips on the road from Arrow Driving School.
- Clear off your car entirely before driving
- Accelerate and brake slowly
- Keep an eye on the weather
- Keep up maintenance on your car
- Always stay calm in case of emergency
- Turn your wheel slowly
- Know how to slide your car if need be
- Be careful of pedestrians and motorists
- Dress warm
- Never drink and drive
Clear Off Your Car Entirely Before Driving
Before you start driving always make sure the hood, front, and back windeshield are free of snow and ice since this can obstruct your driving. Never start your car until the exaust is 100% clear of snow since this can lead to carbon monoxide posioning. Always be sure to shovel a path around your car’s tires to avoid skidding or becoming stuck. It is suggested to keep a small snow shovel in your car, after all weather can be unpredicatable.
Accelerate and Brake Slowly
While you are driving, always be sure to accelerate and brake slower than normal to prevent skidding or your brakes from being locked up. In case your car does end up skidding make sure to keep calm, ease on the brakes and gas and turn the wheel in the direction you want to go, and start easing on the gas slowly. The worst thing you can do is panic. Most cars have anti-locking brakes (ABS), but for winter driving always be sure to keep a more than usual distance between yourself and the car ahead of you.
Keep an Eye on the Weather
Always be sure to never drive in a serious storm, no matter how badly you need to get groceries. Keep an eye on the weather and prepare for the worst. The last thing you need is to be trapped on the road in serious temperature dropping weather. However, if you are driving in bad weather look for a safe place to stop or turn around.
Keep up Maintenance on Your Car
From your tires to your batter, you always want to make sure your car is winter driving ready. Make sure to check tire pressure often and to swap in for snow tires when winter starts rolling in. Check your windshield wipers and make sure they are fully working and have plenty of wiper fluid. Try replacing your battery every other winter, after all, weak batteries are a no go for the winter. Make your way to your local garage to test your current one, and have it charged.
Always Stay Calm in Case of Emergency
One of the biggest rules of winter driving, if not in the entirety of driving school, is to never panic. Always keep a clear head and if need be find a safe place to park. If you are in trouble be sure to call the local authorities, run the motor as little as possible, and use the dome light in your car to preserve your car battery. If you have a survival kit in your car be sure to light a flare at least 3 feet from your car for emergency responders. If you feel start feeling cold, be sure to stretch your arms and legs inside your vehicle. Be sure to not leave your car unless under dire circumstances.
Be Careful of Pedestrians and Motorists
Not everyone is as patient or cautious as you may be on the road. Always be sure to leave plenty of space between you and other motorists. As you may have heard in driving school, check twice save a life. This applies to anyone during the winter season. Always be sure to be wary of sidewalks that may be overloaded with snow, and camouflaging fellow pedestrians. Give yourself plenty of space to slow down in case anyone is crossing at snow covered crosswalks or cars that might get stuck.
Do yourself a favor and dress in layers, especially when it hits the one-digit temperatures. You never know what may happen on the road, and the best thing you can do to prepare is to simply be prepared. No matter how warm your car may be, it never hurts to pack an extra hoodie or spare jacket.
Never Drink and Drive
Probably the biggest one you can hear Arrow Driving School repeating. Never assume drinking is safe, especially in the winter. Nowadays Uber and Lyft drivers are easily accessible or ask your friend for a ride. Play it safe, you won’t be sorry.
For more information on these tips and more, come down to Arrow Driving School!