Winter is coming, but the cold is here. With the general drop in temperatures and atmospheric instability come the first frosts and snowfall to some parts of the country. These circumstances are added to the fact that with the time change we have fewer hours of light, so the Risks behind the wheel increase.
Thus, it is necessary to take extreme precautions to avoid scares on the road and remember fundamental tips to drive safely in cold weather.
Prevention is essential not only to avoid road accidents: the more prepared we are for the arrival of the heavier snowfalls, the better. The chaos it generated is an example the squall ‘Filomena’ almost a year ago: many difficult situations suffered by a large number of drivers could have been avoided.
The fundamental recommendations
📣 ❄️ The first ones are here #snow. Let’s go over some recommendations❓
1️⃣º Find out before leaving
2️⃣º Put the chains in the 🚗 if you don’t have winter wheels
– Directorate General Traffic (@DGTes) November 4, 2021
Find out about the weather before travelling by highway, wear chains adequate in the car if we do not have winter tires (and know how to put them), reduce speed, increase the safety distance with the vehicle that precedes us and bring the dipped headlights on are some of the essential premises that every driver must take into account at this time of year, as the DGT recalls.
These simple recommendations can make a difference in the event of a sudden change in weather or adverse weather conditions, but they are not the only precautions that we must take into account if with the first frosts or snowfalls. we have no other choice to take the car to move. In addition, it is highly recommended:
- To have water and some food in the car.
- Carry a mobile phone with charged battery: a charger compatible with our car or an external “power bank” are not too much either and they hardly take up space in the glove compartment.
- Bring a blanket in the trunk or failing that, Warm clothing. And be careful: it is not advisable to drive with a coat on since, among other things, it limits our movements and reduces efficiency to the belt of security.
- Carrying a full tank of fuel is essential.
Key tips for driving safely on ice and snow
When the ambient temperature is below 7ºC, conventional tires begin to see their performance and grip diminish, but with temperatures below 4ºC the risk is already extreme.
In addition, we must bear in mind that ice sheets can make an appearance, for example, at dusk, in the early hours of the morning, after it has rained or in shady or north-facing areas. Both with ice and snow, these are the main recommendations to keep in mind to drive safely:
- Make a very smooth ride: We must not only handle the steering very carefully, but also the brake pedal.
- Prioritize as far as possible the longer gears.
- Better if you can driving through the tracks of other vehicles: ice and snow hide road markings.
- If when you are going to drive you find snow in the car, you not only have to remove it from the windshield or the headlights: better if you remove as much as possible from the roof and the fenders.
- Remember that the safety distance with the preceding vehicle in case of encountering a snowfall must be greater than with rain. The most advisable is a distance of at least 100 meters under these circumstances.