Stay safe on the road when the weather takes a turn

During winter months, driving conditions can become very unsteady and unsafe and this can lead to a risk of dangers. This could lead to an accident, which could harm you or others and it’s vital to ensure you stay safe when the weather turns. Let’s take a look at how you can surely be safe this season helping yourself and those around you. 

LIGHT UP!

During bad weather, the one thing that can suffer is your road vision. If you’re in thick fog, you may not be able to see well enough with headlights which is why you need to ensure you are using your front and rear fog lights. Even during the day you need optimum visibility and you should always be vigilant of other drivers. If the fog clears, turn your fog lights off and dip your lights.  Lighting up the road is key! Some sports cars offer special lights but every car should have some type of fog lights. Keep a torch in your car also in case you ever need to stop your car.

CHECK YOUR CAR

If you are driving and your car overheats or the tread on your tyres are not properly checked then you could be at risk of skidding. Check your radiator, tyres, and your windscreen wipers to ensure they are working if you need to use them. Keep things in the car, such as an ice-scraper, de-icer, warm clothing or a warm jacket in case you have to wait in your car without heating. 

Checking your car regularly will greatly decrease any chances of something happening whilst you are in the midst of driving. You should also keep a first aid box in your car in case you do have any mishaps and need to take care of yourself. Be sure that you have your tyres checked to the required 3mm tread and that you always keep them blown up. You should also look for cracks in the windows or anything untoward that can become worse with bad weather.

Any cracks can cause issues whilst driving or shattering the glass if it becomes too cold so be sure to check this often. Ensure that your heating system works well and that you won’t run out of water for your radiator. This can cause problems un-steaming the windows and of course it’s important to have maximum visibility so be sure to check that all is in working order.

Have your brakes often checked too; any sign of an issue must be looked at right away as failing breaks in bad weather could be catastrophic. If you slip or slide because of poor brakes you could hit other cars so be sure that you have the appropriate professional checks also. 

DRIVE SENSIBLY

If you are in a rush, people are likely to drive faster but during bad weather, this could be a dangerous scenario. Avoid harsh braking or abrupt manoeuvres and be careful when reversing. Park slower and be wary of skidding or sliding into other cars. Drive behind other cars with a four second rule in case the surface is slippery.

Look out for road signs on motorways and see what information is relayed on motorway screens relating to the length of the time the queue is and how long the delay is likely to be.  Driving responsibly is vital and you must stop if you feel the weather is affecting you too much. Be sure to stop and gas up and check your car often if you are doing a long distance journey, it will be important. 

STAY ALERT AND DON’T DRIVE IF YOU ARE SLEEP OR UNWELL

During the winter months, sometimes we have strong winds and storms, which can affect the motorways especially in higher places.  Strong winds can blow cars around a little, as they do planes, so it’s important to drive slower and avoid any drifting. Stay well clear of buses, trucks, motorbikes, bicycles, and high sided vehicles as they also can drift and so it’s best to give them all a wide birth to avoid issues.

If you have a safe time to overtake then this can be helpful. Be wary needs crossings, bridges or open roads. Judge if you are not feeling well enough or awake enough to drive as these can contribute to issues when driving and cause avoidable accidents which is not good for you or the public. Listen to the weather forecasts and be sensible. You must always be sure that you are focused on your task at hand. 


Photo Credit: Porsche

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