In severe weather, the best thing to do is stay where you are. Realistically though, you may need to drive in the snow, even if the roads are bad.
While you drive, keep these tips in mind:
1. Start slowly to get an idea of how the road feels. It is important to drive slowly and keep control of your vehicle. You should also stay alert, so you are aware of other motorists who may not be able to control their vehicles.
2. If possible, you should have chains or studded tires to allow better traction in snow and ice.
3. Don’t expect to go the speed limit. Snowy roads mean slower speeds. Allow extra time to get to your destination.
4. If you need to stop, pump the brakes gently. Do not make sudden movements or slam on the brakes or you could slide and lose control of your vehicle. If you have anti-lock brakes, apply steady pressure and do not pump the brakes.
5. Allow plenty of space between you and other vehicles. Be aware of conditions and watch in case they make sudden stops.
If your rear wheels start to skid…
1. Take your foot off the gas and steer in the direction that the rear wheels are going.
2. If the rear wheels start to skid the other way, gently steer in that direction.
3. Continue until you have regained control of the vehicle.
4. Apply the brakes as needed, either pumping the brakes gently or applying steady pressure if you have anti-lock brakes.
If your front wheels skid…
1. Take your foot off the gas and shift into neutral without trying to steer.
2. As the vehicle starts to slow, you will once again gain traction. Steer the direction you want to go and shift back into drive, accelerating slowly.
For more winter driving tips, watch this video from AAA.