As temperatures continue to plummet and the forecasts regularly call for snow accumulations, ice, and high winds, staying safe while driving takes a little more work and preparation. Seasoned New Englanders are well versed on managing these rough road conditions. However, it never hurts to take a few minutes and remind ourselves of some of these key components to ensuring we travel as safely as possible.
To start off, you — the driver — are the most important factor in avoiding an accident or problem on the road. In really bad conditions, make the decision to just stay home. Often times, just avoiding the roads all together is the smartest move anyone can make. If that is not an option, then remember to keep supplies in the car, clear the car before driving, and take your time, remaining patient. Additional winter driving tips can be found here.
Braking is a feature we normally take for granted when operating our Hondas. Unfortunately, snow and ice are nasty little devils that eliminate the necessary friction that causes our cars and trucks to slow down. Suddenly being unable to stop is panic inducing! Don’t panic, though. Stay calm. Take your foot off the gas. Lower the gear. Use the emergency brake or a curb to help slow the vehicle. Then get the car in as safe a location as possible before attempting to re-start.
Lastly, avoid the often-seen practice of angling the windshield wipers up and off the windshield. While this may at first glance seem like a smart idea, in actuality, it can cause long-term damage to the wipers, and potentially the windshield as well. Instead, give yourself the extra time to run the defrost setting on the car and preheat the vehicle, then carefully clean the blades before heading out.
New Englanders are a tough bunch. A little snow, or even a LOT of snow, won’t keep us down. But we’re also smart. We know that giving ourselves extra time and following these basic winter driving tips will help keep everyone safer on the roads this winter season.
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