How to safely drive in the snow

So, you have to drive a good distance, yet there is a snowstorm. what do you do?

Easy, postpone or cancel your damn trip. It’s better to be late or reschedule than to be dead.

Most people offering tips will tell you have a full tank, make have good tires, etc. If you’ve thought ahead enough to have your car snow ready, you should have thought ahead enough to avoid the snow. If your car is not ready to drive in the snow, then you need to stop reading now and cancel your trip. If your windshield wipers are bad, lights don’t work, tires are worn, etc, you need to stay off the road for your sake and the sake of others.

However, I recognize that sometimes reality doesn’t always allow for people to stay home in the snow. Sometimes you have to risk life and limb for reasons outside of your control. If that is the situation in which you find yourself, here are a few helpful tips:

1) Speed is your enemy. The faster you go, the more dangerous your drive becomes. Plan to have your trip take 2-3 time longer than usual.

2) Don’t drive like an asshole. This may be harder for residence of some certain states. But the aggressive driving tactics (tailgating, cutting people off, weaving through traffic, not signalling, etc) are the actions that will put you and others at the greatest risk.

3) Give yourself 3 times the normal difference between you and the other cars. Stopping will be more difficult, and sudden stops will cause you to skid and slide. When you have to stop, stop gentle and ease off if your wheels lock.

4) Don’t drive like an asshole. I know I said this already, but I can’t emphasize this point enough.

5) People will generally pick a single clear lane and start a caravan of cars in this lane. This lane is the safest lane, so don’t be tempted to drive through the other covered lanes to save time.

6) Don’t drive like an asshole. I have to reiterate this, I’m from New Jersey.

7) When you need turn, turn gradually. Sharp, sudden turns can cause you to slide and lose control. Plan your turn well in advance and do them slow and easy.

8 ) Don’t drive like an asshole. At this point, this bit is getting tedious, but you have to remember that most asshole drivers are a bit slow on the learning curve.

9) Remember that driving hummers, trucks, or SUV’s do not give you super powers. These vehicles get their great off-road abilities largely because of their weight increasing their traction through friction. Once you remove the friction via a snowy road, that same weight makes them more dangerous through increased momentum. If you drive one of these, you still have to follow the safe driving rules.

Some additional safe driving links:

http://www.suite101.com/content/how-to-drive-in-the-snow-a82890

http://www.weather.com/activities/driving/drivingsafety/drivingsafetytips/snow.html

http://www.edmunds.com/car-safety/driving-on-snow-and-ice-10-safety-tips.html

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