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WINTER DRIVING 101
Don't let the winter weather catch you and your car by surprise. Check out the tips below to make sure you're prepared.
- Don't drive in winter until snow and/or ice is completely cleared off your windows, side view mirrors, headlights, taillights and license plates.
- Before you head into winter traffic, make sure that your windshield wipers are not frozen to your windshield.
- Keep your windshield washer fluid tank full.
- Before you take off in cold weather, start your car and let it warm up for a minute to allow the oil to flow. This will ease wear on your engine and other mechanical components.
- Check the tread on your tires regularly for uneven or extreme wear.
- Keep half a tank of gas in your vehicle. If you become stranded in extreme conditions, the extra fuel can keep you nice and warm.
- Whenever you run your car to keep warm in the cold weather, make sure you keep a window cracked to prevent carbon monoxide from building up. If you can, free the exhaust pipe from any snow to further reduce the carbon monoxide risk.
- Take care when parking in snow. A blocked tailpipe could lead to carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Keep an extra hat, pair of gloves and ice scraper in your car for unexpected weather changes.
- Keep a winter survival kit in your vehicle, including a blanket, clothes, gloves, boots and an emergency flashlight, medication and non-perishable foods like candy bars or crackers.
- Just in case of a snow emergency, keep a snow shovel, an extra pair of windshield wiper blades and a snow brush/ice scraper handy.
- If you are heading into a skid or slip, remember to keep your foot off the brake and off of the accelerator.
- When stuck in the ice or snow, try using your floor mats to gain extra traction under your tires.
- If you hit a patch of ice and start to slide, take your foot off of the gas pedal! Do not use your brake. Do not jerk the steering wheel. If you can remember, turn your car towards the skid.
- If the road conditions are icy and/or snowy, don't panic, and slow down! People have a tendency to panic and over-steer.