Car Driving on Snowy Road

How to Drive Safe in Winter Weather

It’s that time of year again. The days are getting shorter, and the roads are covered in snow. Although it comes every year, many drivers don’t know how to drive safe in winter weather. As a result, they might lose control and end up fishtailing into a signpost or even another car.

Tip #1: Slow Down

Snow and ice reduce tire traction. That means the tires don’t have a strong grip on the road. This can make turning difficult. When the roads are especially bad, even a slight curve can send someone fishtailing into the other lane.

When driving on snow and ice, drivers should slow down by about 10-15 mph. They should also make an effort to accelerate and brake slower than they might normally. Accelerating too fast can cause the wheels to spin in place, which will almost certainly cause a driver to lose control when they escape the snowy drift.

Tip #2: Pump the Brakes

Inexperienced drivers have a tendency to panic when they start sliding on a snowy road. They almost always slam their brakes as hard as they can, only to feel their heart sink when the car doesn’t respond.

If a car starts sliding on a snowy road, pump the brakes. Apply the brake gently with a flutter of the foot to maintain traction in the snow. Providing extra distance to slow down is the key. Trying to brake too quickly will cause a car to slide instead of stop.

Tip #3: Eyes on the Road

As cars need more time to slow down, drivers should always have their eyes on the road. They should look ahead to identify ice patches or parts of the road that have not been fully cleared.

A half-plowed road is arguably one of the more dangerous places to drive. When a road has not been fully plowed, cars tend to follow each other’s tire tracks as they create a ditch with more traction. However, moving out of these lines even slightly (especially during a turn) can cause drivers to quickly and unexpectedly lose control of their vehicles.

If you or someone you love suffered an auto injury due to someone else’s negligence, you could have a case. If you’d like an experienced Tennessee auto injury attorney from Pete Olson Law to evaluate your claim, don’t hesitate to send us an email or call (931) 286-7773.
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