5 Winter Driving Tips to Keep on Your Mind

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Beyond having the right kind of car with the setup to help you navigate the worst winter weather patterns out on the road, keeping in mind safe and attentive driving habits can prevent accidents during the cold months in your area. When roads get slick with ice, rain or snow, and with added complications from plows, salt trucks, and other seasonal public works vehicles, you'll want to have both hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road in every situation. For a quick starter on winter driving, follow these five helpful tips:

  1. Drive slower than usual: This is an obvious one, but with any kind of precipitation that builds up on the road, particularly ice and snow, slowing down will prevent you from rear-ending into the vehicles in front of you.
  2. Increase your following distance: Along with slowing down to a safe speed, maintaining a longer distance between your car and the vehicle in front of you will lead to safer driving through snow and along ice-slicked roads.
  3. Have the right tires and keep them properly inflated: If you live in regions that regularly see lots of ice and snow, switching out to winter tires is always smart. You'll also want to make sure your tires are properly inflated before you drive over snow- and ice-covered roads.
  4. Keep at least half a tank of gas in your tank: You never know when traffic might crawl to a halt or if you can't get to your destination in a timely manner, and for starting your car in cold weather, having enough gas to start up or to last while idling is paramount during the winter months.
  5. Keep some warm clothes and other gear in your vehicle: While avoiding breakdowns or accidents is easy when following the rest of these tips, you should always prepare for the worst. Having extra sets of warm clothes, a stocked first-aid kit and other gear will help you out if you find yourself stuck.
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