It’s only November but we’ve seen our share of unseasonably cold weather here in Wisconsin. Unfortunately, this means snow and snowy commutes are just around the corner.
Whether you’re a Wisconsin native or new to the area, we can all benefit from a few reminders regarding safe winter driving.
- Check your car’s tire pressure. Colder weather can cause lower tire pressure, so ensure your tires are inflated correctly. If you use snow tires, now’s the time to have them switched out.
- Check that your car’s battery is charged and replace it if needed. Battery power can drop when the temperatures drop.
- Get the right tools for clearing the ice and snow from your car, such as an ice scraper and snow brush.
- Pack an emergency kit to keep in your car. Include water, snacks, a cell phone charger, blankets, a shovel, a first aid kit, extra winter gear, a flashlight, sand or cat litter and other supplies.
Proceed with Caution
Snowy roads require extra safety precautions, including reduced speed, caution on bridges and keeping a good distance from other vehicles. If you must travel, know the road conditions before you leave by checking the local resources. Drive according to the weather and road conditions and keep the following in mind:
- Be especially aware during the first snowfall. Drivers often forget how to accommodate for snowy conditions.
- Slow down and leave yourself enough time to get where you’re going.
- Increase your following distance between you and other vehicles.
- Brake carefully to stay in control and avoid using your car’s cruise control.
- Keep your gas tank close to full.
- Give snow plows plenty of space and slow down as soon as you see one. Plows travel slowly and may create snow clouds as they clear the roadways.
Winter driving can be challenging so before you venture out, take extra safety precautions to keep you and your family safe. If possible, delay your travel to avoid having to drive in snowy and icy conditions. if you must go, take safe driving seriously.