Helpful Tips for Winter Driving

Snoy Drive - Be Careful
Image, courtesy of the Lamb Family.

This holiday season, M.C. Mobility would like to share some tips to make your travels safe.

When the roads are covered in snow, the best advice is to stay inside as much as possible.  Sometimes leaving the house can’t be avoided though, so remember these tips while driving in cold weather:

  • Be mindful to slow down. There is no rush in bad weather; when you speed, you are more likely to slip on ice or in loose snow. If you have an appointment somewhere, be sure to call them before you leave your home if you believe you are going to be late. Most of the time, people will understand delays due to weather.
  • When braking, do not slam on the brakes. This will lead to slipping and loss of traction. Slowly use the brake to bring yourself to a stop. The easiest way to avoid slipping while braking is by lowering your overall speed, especially if you do not have an antilock braking system in your vehicle.
  • If you DO find yourself in a skid, stop accelerating and steer into the skid. This will give you more control over the vehicle and will allow you to bring it to a stop quicker and safer.
  • Avoid using cruise control as much as possible. Not using cruise control gives the driver more instant control over the vehicle in case of loss of control on ice.
  • Be sure to have any lifts or accessibility mechanisms serviced before bad weather comes into full swing. Making sure that you lift works in cold weather before the snow falls will insure your safety in bad weather later on.
  • If your vehicle becomes stuck in the snow, turn your wheel back and forth to allow the tires to dig into the ground. Lightly touch the gas to gain traction. If at this point you are unable to dislodge your vehicle, try rocking it back and forth to gain more ground.
  • Make an emergency kit for your vehicle. Include blankets, granola bars, and some clean water in a leak proof container. Keep this under your seat or in an open trunk area so that it accessible from inside the vehicle. Never leave a vehicle during a blizzard. Instead, stay in the vehicle and call for help using a cell phone.
  • Most important of all, be sure to have a charged cell phone on you at all times while driving. Be sure to have phones numbers such as local tow companies and garages already programmed into it. If you do not have a cell phone, be sure that someone (such as a neighbor or roommate) knows an estimated time you will be returning home so that someone can be called if you do not arrive on time.

Cold weather can be unpredictable, but if properly prepared, you can make it home safely.  M.C. Mobility would like to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holidays.  Drive safe this winter!

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