Winter brings a lot of exciting opportunities to make memories with your family. And, whether you’re going off to see family for the holidays or taking a trip north to ski some slopes, chances are you’ll have to do a fair bit of driving. While snow can help make any landscape into an idyllic winter wonderland, it also makes for rather dangerous driving conditions.
If you find yourself in a car accident this winter due to weather conditions, an experienced Oklahoma City car accident lawyer can help in determining whether or not you were at fault or negligent during the accident. But the best way to stay healthy this holiday season is to avoid getting in an accident altogether. Here are our top recommended tips for driving safely this winter.
General Winter Driving Tips
When in an enclosed area, such as a garage, never run your vehicle to keep it warm. Keep your gas tank at least halfway full at all times, and regularly check your tires to make sure they’re properly inflated. In cold, rainy, or snowy weather, avoid using the parking brake whenever possible. Also, do not use cruise control on icy or snowy roads.
Don’t drive when tired if possible. Make sure you’re properly rested before attempting to drive in wintry weather conditions. If you’re on a particularly long road trip for the holidays or some other occasion, be sure to plan regular breaks so you don’t wear yourself out while driving.
Driving In Snow and Ice
Stay home when possible. If there is a snowstorm and no need to go out, don’t risk getting yourself in a dangerous situation. If you do have to go out, always drive slowly. On snow-covered roads, accelerating, turning, and stopping takes longer, so make sure that you allow yourself enough time to properly maneuver. This goes for acceleration as well; avoid applying pressure to the pedal too quickly. Give yourself plenty of time for car trips in snow so that you’re not rushing.
Know how to brake properly. Anti-lock brakes (ABS) may vibrate if you push hard and need to slow down or stop quickly, which is normal. If you don’t have ABS, apply consistent, firm pressure on the brake pedal with the ball of your foot while keeping your heel on the ground, and gently pump up and down.
Avoid stopping when possible, including slowing down and keeping moving until the light changes. It takes a lot more effort to start moving and speed up from a full stop, especially when there’s snow on the ground. Get inertia on flat surfaces before attempting to go uphill. If you have to drive up a hill, do not stop on the way up.
Contact an Oklahoma City Car Accident Lawyer
Of course, sometimes circumstances beyond our control cause us to get in an accident. You can control your own defensive driving, but not the actions of others or the weather conditions. If you do get in a car accident this winter and need legal help from a qualified Oklahoma City Car Accident Lawyer, do not hesitate to contact us at Parrish DeVaughn Law Firm.