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Winter driving safety on icy roads

On Behalf of | Jan 11, 2024 | Car Accidents |

Winter weather can make driving conditions hazardous. Icy and snow-covered roads reduce traction and visibility, making it easier to lose control of your vehicle.

While driving in wintry conditions requires extra caution from all of us, there are steps you can take to help keep yourself and your passengers safe.

Drive slowly

When roads are icy, you need to reduce your speed to have better control. Accelerating, turning and braking all take longer on slick surfaces. Give yourself ample stopping distance from other vehicles and slow down well in advance of intersections or curves.

Know your brakes

When driving on ice, refrain from abrupt braking whenever possible. If you have anti-lock brakes, apply steady pressure to the pedal. For cars without anti-lock brakes, pump the brakes gently.

Focus on your traction

Rather than slamming on your brakes, reduce your speed early if you have to stop. Make smooth, gradual steering adjustments to keep control. Avoid sudden movements of acceleration, braking or steering to minimize skidding. Drive in the tracks of the vehicle ahead of you when possible for better traction.

Be aware of the conditions

Roads that look clear may have black ice. Bridges, overpasses and infrequently traveled lanes often freeze first, even when other areas seem fine. Check road conditions through the news or your local highway department before heading out.

More than 116,000 people suffer injuries in accidents on icy, snowy and slushy roadways every year. Staying alert and driving cautiously will help you navigate wintry roads safely. By adjusting your speed, following distance and driving habits to conditions, you can do your part to prevent accidents this season.