Winter is here, and as temperatures drop, driving can get more dangerous. Driving on snowy and icy roads increases the likelihood of your being involved in an accident. Do your research to prepare for the conditions that you’ll have to face on the road during this season. Here are some winter driving safety tips that you can follow while driving in NY.
Traveling on Icy Roads
Roads become icy when they are soaked due to rain or melting ice and snow. Once the surface temperatures become chilly, the pavement freezes, turning any rain into ice. The most severe roads include black ice. Black ice is a thin layer that often blends in with the pavement. Black ice gives off the impression of just another wet spot on the road. During nighttime driving, you may accidentally roll over a patch of black ice. Icy roadways prevent your tires from getting solid traction. Without good traction, steering and putting on your breaks can be difficult.
Extreme drops in temperature can impact your tire’s air pressure. During warm weather, your tires are properly inflated. However, once the temperature drops, the tires lose air pressure. Once your tires lose pressure, they lose their ability to grip the road. Depending on the amount of pressure that they lose, driving can become extremely dangerous. It may not take much for you to lose control of your vehicle. The decrease in tire pressure may also permanently damage your vehicle’s tires.
Winterize Your Car
In case of an emergency, make sure that you have the essentials in your car. Pack your vehicle with emergency supplies such as blankets in the event that you have to wait for emergency roadside assistance. Try to keep your cellphone battery relatively high in case you have to make a call for help. Always take your car in for regular oil changes and you have a fresh batch of anti-freeze in your car. Replace worn windshield wipers and check your battery to see if you need a new one. Also, change all of the lights in your vehicle that appear to be dull. To drive safely, your headlights and taillights should be working properly. Try to keep a full tank of gas in your car to prevent your gas line from freezing. Your vehicle’s exhaust pipe should be clear of snow and any other excess debris. If the exhaust pipe is clogged, you may damage your engine.
If you have to travel somewhere or even on your commute to work, leave early so that you have enough time to get there safely. During the winter, you will have to travel slowly. If you travel over bridges and overpasses, make sure you are very cautious since ice is more often found on these surfaces. Also, try to keep all of your windows clear to have optimal vision as you drive.
Watch Your Acceleration
During the winter, make sure that you accelerate slowly. Putting your foot down on the gas while driving in snowy or icy conditions can make you lose control of your car. This also applies when you are trying to put on the brakes. Accelerate and de-accelerate slowly to avoid getting into an accident while you are driving. Try to state at least 7 seconds behind the person driving in front of you. This will help keep you safe on the road and avoid a serious accident. Also, do not put your car on cruise control. Having your car in cruise control while you drive can lead to an accident.
It’s human nature for you to get distracted and let your mind wander. However, you must stay alert at all times while you are driving in the snow. Perhaps you may have to turn the radio off. Pay attention to your surroundings at all times.
Driving during the winter can be dangerous. However, these winter safety driving tips should help you manage the challenges you face on the road. If you have additional questions about your car insurance coverage, contact the experts at East End Insurance Agency today. We are ready to offer assistance for all your insurance needs.