It is especially important – for both new and experienced drivers – to drive carefully in bad weather. Here are some winter driving tips to protect yourself, your passengers and other drivers:
- Avoid unnecessary travel during and immediately after snowstorms. If you need to be out on the roads, allow extra time to get to your destination.
- Make sure your gas tank is full and you have windshield washer fluid.
- Keep your cell phone fully charged.
- Notify family or friends of your travel plans and the route you plan to take.
- Use extra caution on bridges and overpasses.
- Leave extra room between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you.
- Keep an emergency kit in your car, including jumper cables, road flares, blankets and warm clothes, and a small shovel and some sand in case you get stuck.
If you find yourself stuck on the roads in a winter storm, contact your local authorities or state police immediately. Follow these tips in the meantime:
- If it's safe, stay with your car and wait for help to arrive.
- If it's safe to exit your car, tie a brightly colored piece of cloth to the antenna so your car is easier to find.
- Make sure the exhaust pipe is clear of snow to prevent a backup of carbon monoxide and crack a window for fresh air.
- Run the engine in short bursts, for 10 minutes at a time.