Winter-wise Driving Tips

As winter weather kicks into full gear throughout Ohio, here are some helpful tips to make your daily ventures into the elements a little safer.

Become familiar with your vehicle’s winter weather operating characteristics. Front wheel drive vehicles generally handle better than rear wheel drive vehicles on slippery roads because the engine’s weight is on the drive wheels, improving traction.

Stay with your vehicle while warming it up. An unattended, running car invites theft. Keep your windows clear of snow and ice and remember to clean head, tail and brake lights.

To prevent fuel line freeze-up, keep your gas tank at least half full. Fill your gas tank before parking for lengthy periods.

Leave ample stopping time between you and the driver in front of you. Braking distance can be up to nine times greater on snowy, icy surfaces than on dry roads.

If your vehicle is equipped with an Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS), be sure to STOMP – firmly depress the brake pedal. STAY on the brakes – do not pump the brakes. STEER where you want the vehicle to go.

Gently pump non-ABS brakes to stop the vehicle. Take any corrective action gradually to maintain full control of the vehicle. Refer to the vehicle’s operations manual for proper methods to correct skids.

Consider creating a safety kit with flares, blankets, water, sand, salt, a shovel and a flashlight in the event of being stranded.

Drive with extreme caution on bridges and overpasses during freezing temperatures because their temperatures can be five to six degrees colder than roadways and can become slick and icy before roads.

Whether you have employees who regularly drive in bad weather as part of your operation, or if you’re just driving into the office each day, we hope these reminders keep you safe during the winter season.

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