With winter now truly upon us, the bad weather is starting to creep in. Each season of the great British weather presents various challenges for drivers, Winter weather can wreak havoc on our roads causing many delays and accidents.
We have put together a few tips to help keep you safe on the wintery roads:
Snow and ice
Keep an eye on the weather forecast, when planning your route, and adjust your driving according to the conditions you find yourself in.
If you do not have to drive, we suggest where possible you stay at home, only travel if absolutely necessary but if you do have to venture out in snowy weather always be sure to clear all of your windows on the car, front-rear, and sides, so you have a clear view of the road, also be sure to remove snow off the roof which as you brake or the car warms up could fall forward and totally block your view when driving. Also, ensure your number plate is clear and visible.
Stick to main roads where possible, the main roads will have had more traffic on them and maybe snow ploughs clearing them so will be safer. Try and avoid side roads and minor roads if possible.
Avoid steep hills, (going up or down), hills will make it harder to control the car and make driving more challenging in the snow.
Mist and fog
Ensure you use your headlights when visibility is seriously reduced, we would suggest if you can not see for more than 100 metres, you will need to put them on.
If the fog is severe, and you are struggling to see other vehicles on the road use your fog lights.
If your car has air-con, use it, it will stop your windows from misting up and restricting your view. Follow the “two-second rule” (allow at least 2 seconds from the vehicle in front) make sure you leave enough space between yourself and the car in front.
Storms, rains and high winds
If there is heavy rain, we would suggest you drive slower, roads can become more slippery than usual when wet and visibility can be reduced, even when using your windscreen wipers.
Give yourself more time to react, increase the gap to the car in front to at least 4 seconds.
Use dipped headlights if visibility is reduced.
Spray from other vehicles can also reduce your visibility, stay alert and again leave room if possible.
If you find a road is flooded, turn around where possible and find another route. Flood water can damage your car, even if it's not that deep if sucked into the engine of your car it can lead to severe damage.
High winds can cause your vehicle to be blown sideways, keep a firm grip on your steering wheel and allow enough room on either side if this should happen.
It could be a good idea to keep a blanket or big coat in the boot of your car in the winter months, as well as an ice scraper and de-icer and a snow shovel-just in case! Hopefully, you will not need to use them but there are there in case you do!