Did you know that around 70% of accidental deaths thatoccur during the winter are not from exposure or exhaustion, but automobileaccidents? Don’t let a late winter storm catch you unaware. Here are five tipsto help drive more safely when conditions are less than ideal:
- Check Your Tires and Your Tire Pressure
Tires with worn treads can’tgrip wet and icy roads well, and less traction means a more dangerous drive.The easiest way to check the treads is the penny test: place a penny in agroove in the tire with Lincoln’s head down and facing you. Seeing all ofLincoln’s head means that the tire tread is less than 2/32”,which means it’s time to get a set of new tires.
Tire pressure can alsonegatively affect a snowy, icy drive. Cold causes the air in your tires tocontract. In fact, your tire loses about a pound of pressure for every 10°drop. If you already have underinflated tires, this can mean a significant lossof traction. Underinflation also causes more wear and tear on your tires.
- Carry a Winter Driving Emergency Kit
A winter driving emergency kitcan help you when you’re in—or when you need to get out of—a winter drivingsituation. A winter driving emergency kit should include all of the regulars,such as:
- Jumper cables
Your emergency kit should alsoinclude:
- Ice scraper
- Bag of kitty litter
You can even add a small shovel.
- Brush Up on Winter Driving
Brush up on your winter drivingskills before the snow and ice hit. It can be difficult to remember the tipsyou learned in driving school all those years ago, especially when you onlyhave to use them a few times a decade.
Q: A quick review: when brakingon ice, what to do in the event of a skid?
A: turn in the direction of theskid!
Q: When going up and down hills,how do you brake correctly?
A: slow, steady pressure (noquick stomps on the brake pedal).
Also be aware that sometimes themost important thing to do is stay home.
- Go Slowly
No matter what type of car youown, wet, snowy and icy roads affect everyone. Don’t believe that just becauseyou have an SUV or a particular model of car, the rules of safe winter drivingdon’t apply.
Speed affects your car’straction, and without traction, you can find yourself slipping and sliding allover the road.
- Ready Your Car
One of the most important thingsyou can do for safe winter driving is to make sure your car is ready for winterdriving. In addition to your tires, make sure you get your battery, wiperfluid, wiper blades and other essential car functions checked out by thetrusted professionals at Quanz. Thesesystems keep your car running well, even in the worst conditions. Don’tbe left out in the cold when our New Mexico winter throws its last punch atyou. The professionals at Quanz Auto Bodycan help ensure your car is ready for any driving conditions winter throws yourway.