Winter weather is in full effect, and as much as we would all probably love to stay curled up and warm on the couch, now is a huge time of year for travel. Seeing friends and family is such a great part of the holiday season, but the roads can be even more dangerous during the winter. If you’re used to driving in the south, it’s important to familiarize yourself with road safety during inclement winter weather. Check out these 5 driving safety tips if you’re headed north for the holidays this year.
- Get Your Car Serviced
Breaking down in cold weather can be fatal, so it’s important to check routine maintenance off your list before you even get on the road. Are there any little items that need repairs? Check your battery, fluid levels, and tire pressure and tread. Make sure your lights are all working properly and that they aren’t fogged over.
- Stock up with Emergency Items
Always keep an ice scraper, jumper cables, spare tire and tools for changing a tire in your vehicle. Have a couple bags of kitty litter or sand in case you get stuck in snow-this will help create traction underneath your tires. Flashlights and flares are great to have in case of an emergency. Warm blankets, coats, hats and gloves are all necessary items to keep stocked in your vehicle. Keep a spare phone charger, water and food as well.
- Plan Your Route
Mapping out your route ahead of time is helpful for familiarizing yourself with your path and it also allows you to work out any alternative routes you can take in case of road closures or accidents. Let friends or family know what route you’re taking so they’ll have an idea of where you are if there’s an emergency.
- Be Patient
Leave earlier than you feel necessary so that you don’t feel rushed leaving. Keep in mind, though, that it will most likely take you longer than expected to reach your destination. Holiday traffic is usually fairly heavy, and during inclement winter weather, it’s more important than ever to take your time while driving. If there’s heavy rain or snow, don’t hesitate to pull over until it lets up a bit.
- Stay Alert
Keep your eyes on the road at all times, and always be prepared to brake. It’s difficult to see stopped traffic ahead during rain and snow, so be aware of your surroundings and drive with caution. Keep in mind that black ice is essentially invisible-if the temperature is below freezing it could sneak up on you at any time.
A Final Note
Heavy traffic and inclement weather mean car accidents are not uncommon during the holiday season. According to lawyers in Lawrenceville, NJ, if you’re injured in an accident you could be entitled to compensation. Keep these 5 driving tips in mind to help ensure a safe journey if you’re headed north for the holidays this winter.