Modern cars make you to completely relax and lean on the reliable shoulder of electronic assistants. However, neither the most modern electronics, nor good tires, nor all-wheel drive, which sometimes seems omnipotent, provide one hundred percent safety and do not relieve the driver of responsibility. Therefore, driving should keep the maximum concentration — especially in winter, when the asphalt in the city is covered with snow porridge and slippery reagent film, and country roads are dusted with snow.
You have to be extremely attentive while driving, no matter whether it’s your own or rented vehicle. Moreover, in case you traveling with a hired one, you may be charged with fees by a rental service in case some road accident happens. However, well-qualified rental specialists will give you professional consultation on how to protect yourself in any situation, regardless it will be ferrari hire or a budget city car.
Below are ten rules, compliance with which will make your driving as safe as possible in winter.
- Do not forget about the seemingly obvious things that, alas, most drivers neglect. Driving in winter has to be smooth, gentle, delicate, ice under the wheels will not forgive you for harsh handling of the steering wheel.
- To avoid slipping when starting off on a slippery surface, you need to treat the gas pedal with extreme respect, do not trample it on the floor — and strictly monitor the angle of rotation of the wheels: they must stand strictly straight.
- On the the winter road, a good driver must constantly be one step ahead of events and see not only what is happening in front of his own hood, but also several cars ahead. The basis of the correct driver’s vision is to be concentrated not on where you are going, but where you want to be.
- How to understand what kind of coating is under the wheels, and predict the behavior of the car? You can briefly and confidently press the brake pedal several times on an empty stretch of road. The use of tires on a car without ABS or the vibration of the pedal on a car with an anti-lock system will warn you that there is a slippery coating under the wheels.
- If the car has gone into a skid, in no case should you abruptly drop the gas pedal or frantically press the brake. To overcome the slip, you should quickly turn the steering wheel in the direction of skidding and immediately return it to its original position.
- On the ice surface, try to guide the wheels to where the traction is potentially maximum in these conditions. Asphalt bald spots, snow islands, old rough ice allow tires to cling to the road better and stabilize the car in the initial phase of sliding.
- In the snow porridge, it is better to stick to the beaten path of the “pioneers”. If this is impossible for some reason, it is necessary to steer with sharp short movements and hold on tightly to the steering wheel so as not to let the car “walk”. And the best way to drive on a deep track is to move with the wheel pressed against its edge.
- Any, even the most useful skills, mastered exclusively in theory, will not help you in an emergency. Therefore, all movements must be worked out to automatism. It is better to practice somewhere on a deserted site outside the city or take a few lessons at a school of emergency driving. To effectively deal with slips, you need to learn not to be afraid of them — and this can only be achieved by practice.
- Do not forget about preparing the car for winter. In addition to the desirable “auto chemistry” treatment of the body, door seals and hinges, it will be useful to replace the cabin filter: otherwise, due to poor air circulation, the windows will quickly fog up. And with worn-out wiper blades, it’s better not to go on a winter road.
- And finally, an important component of safe driving in winter is winter tires. Studded or friction tires — choose according to your taste and your needs, but remember some features: friction tires are less noisy and often behave better on wet asphalt and snow, but studded tires allow you to feel confident on ice. However, in severe frost, friction tires gain an advantage due to a more elastic tread, while the spikes cannot cling to the hardened ice and give up in the snow.