Generally speaking, snow and vehicles do not go well together. As anyone with any degree of driving experience knows, even a modest snowfall can make driving safely a challenge. Not only do ice roads increase the chances of your car swerving, but snowfall and icy temperatures can also seriously affect visibility and, as a result, reaction time.
While many of us spend time learning about how to drive under snowy conditions in driving school, for those who live in the Lower Mainland, it is not often that we have to put these practical tips into action. As a result, in the case of a snowstorm, we can find ourselves dangerously underprepared.
If you are uncomfortable with driving in hostile wintery conditions, you may want to consider enlisting the help of a designated driver in Vancouver. At Safe Designated Drivers, we specialize in helping people make it home safe.
However, don’t allow us alone to convince you. In this article, we will go over the possible peril that snowy driving brings, as well as the ways in which you can do your part to drive safely throughout the winter months. Still not feeling up to it after you digest these great tips? Don’t worry — we’ll still be around to pick you up.
The Dangers of Driving in the Snow
Black ice — are there any two words that bring more of a chill to a driver’s spine? Black ice refers to a particular kind of ice that is itself clear and as a result completely unnoticeable to any driver. If you do not react appropriately when met with black ice, your car can slide into the side of the road or even into oncoming traffic.
Driving Too Fast
Let’s be honest — most of us are accustomed to driving a tiny bit over the speed limit. However, there is a big difference between doing 60 kilometres per hour in a 50 zone in the summer and doing the same thing in the winter (though we don’t condone either!) The problem is, in the winter, driving too quickly can be a serious danger to both you and your passengers. One of the main reasons for this is that it is simply easier to lose control of your vehicle when the roads are slippery, and driving too fast makes it very likely that you will do exactly this.
Running Out of Fuel
While there is never a good time to run out of fuel, there is no denying that this prospect only worsens in the depth of the winter months. This is especially true if you find yourself in a rural area without many as stations — the last thing that you want is to be left with an empty tank of gas in the frigid cold, nowhere near a gas station.
How to Safely Drive in the Snow?
Know-How to Combat Black Ice
Although black ice in itself can be scary, your fears may wane if you know what to do when met with it. The correct way to deal with black ice is not to brake but instead is to ease off the gas and calmly maintain control of your steering wheel. Easier said than done, right?
Drive for the Weather
Oftentimes, accidents in the wintertime could have been prevented if the drivers had operated their vehicle with the weather in mind. As a general rule, you should drive slower than you normally would during the wintertime, especially after a snowfall.
Avoid Using Cruise Control
For many of us who drive long distances on the regular, cruise control can feel like a godsend. However, it is never a good idea to use cruise control during winter weather. The reason behind this is because cruise control could cause you to slip and slide on roads that are covered in snow, which could, in turn, make you lose any of the control you had over your vehicle.
Needless to say, driving in the snow is not always an easy task, and this is especially true if you are driving in an area you are not familiar with. If you do not feel as if you are up to driving in inclement weather, you’re not alone. Trust Safe Designated Drivers as your Vancouver designated driver service.