Monday, December 19, 2016
New Hampshirites are no strangers to snowy driving conditions. However, there is something about the first few winter storms that can throw us off out A-game. Snowy and icy roads are extremely dangerous, and while schedules and meetings are important, our top priority must always be safety.
The New Hampshire Department of Transportation has published a list of Winter Driving Safety Tips. Here is a quick overview. Visit NH.gov for the full list. These tips may seem common sense, but a little reminder never hurts!
Snowy and icy weather can quickly slicken roads and reduce driving visibility. Slow down and stay alert in these conditions. Don’t pull out in front of other cars too quickly. Give yourself extra space between your car and other vehicles. Avoid using cruise control.
Give yourself plenty of stopping room before applying brakes. Apply brakes appropriately to your braking system: if you have anti-lock brakes, press the pedal down firmly and hold it. If you don’t have anti-lock brakes, gently pump the pedal. Remember, four-wheel drive will not help you stop sooner. Accelerate gradually. Avoid abrupt steering maneuvers.
Don’t follow or stop too closely behind plows. Never drive into a snow cloud—it could conceal a snowplow. Snowplows travel much slower than posted speeds, when approaching a plow, give yourself plenty of time and space to slow down. Remember a snowplow driver’s vision is restricted.
Research driving conditions before leaving home. Clear all snow and ice from your vehicle before driving. Always wear your seatbelt. Give yourself extra driving time. Check your vehicle’s tires, brakes, fluids, wiper blades, lights, belts, and hoses to make sure they‘re in good condition before the start of the winter season.