During the winter, it’s always important to keep safe while on the road. Ask anyone, and they can probably tell you about a nightmare January drive on the 401 or Highway 7, or even hazardous driving conditions on the Queensway during the holiday shopping rush. With snow, wind, ice, and hail, things can get dangerous very quickly. Keep in mind these tips from your insurance broker to prevent any serious issues.
First and foremost:
Check Your Vehicle
Before heading out on the road always check your vehicle. Test your car battery, the air pressure in your tires, and the tread to prevent sliding on slippery roads. If you haven’t already, head to your mechanic to review brakes, ignition system, demist/defroster, wiper blades and windshield fluid, exhaust system, fluid levels and belts. You don’t want the misfortune of having your vehicle unexpectedly break down in the middle of nowhere.
Drive With Caution
Always maintain a stable velocity especially during snow storms. Maintain a low speed, keep a greater distance between you and the car ahead, and allow for more time to stop and steer. Accelerate gently and utilize low revs and as quickly as possible set to a higher gear. Keep an eye out for drivers near you, especially if the road hasn’t been salted yet. In the unfortunate event you start to skid, the important thing is to not panic. Find a spot to direct your vehicle and steer towards that area. Never brake or accelerate as this will cause you to lose control of your car.
Prepare Yourself Before Driving
There are many things to keep in mind when preparing yourself to hit the road, whether it’s in a town nearby or across country. First of all it is highly recommended to have your vehicle insured, many things can happen on the road you did not plan for; you don’t want to be caught in the middle of it unprepared. The risk of vehicle accidents rises during winter. Also make sure to review your car insurance coverage with your insurance broker. Does it make sense to add collision coverage? Now is the time to review your car insurance policy and make sure you are properly protected.
You should always keep equipment useful for winter driving. Use flashlights in the event of being stranded at night. Flashlights are a great help to draw attention and receive assistance. Along with this, keep a snow shovel and a snow brush, first aid kit, snacks, extra windshield wiper fluids that support subfreezing temperatures and traction maps. Always warm up your vehicle in the mornings and take some time to expose windows from icy snow. Keep your cellphone charged and have a car charger ready in hand just in case you use all of your phone’s battery.
Safe driving this winter starts with being prepared!