How can I drive safely in bad weather?
When I'm driving and the weather starts to get bad, I kind of freak out. Sometimes I even have to pull over. My boyfriend and I are planning to take a trip to Canada to see his family for Christmas, and I'm worried about driving in the snow. How can I make sure that I'm being safe if the weather gets bad?
- Check the weather: Since you already know when you’re heading up north, keep an eye on the forecast and either try to beat any big storms or take an alternate route to avoid driving in bad conditions.
- Leave some room: Your brake time will be slower when you’re driving in dangerous conditions, so you’ll want to leave more space between you and the car in front of you. Two car lengths is ideal.
- Be sure your car is ready: In the winter, it’s really important to have good brakes, so you’ll want to get your brakes checked in advance of your trip. You’ll also want good visibility, so ensure that your windshield wipers are functioning properly, you have enough windshield washer fluid, and your windshield and mirrors are free from ice or fog.
- Keep your ears open: While you may not want to distract yourself with loud music, it’s a great idea to keep a local radio station playing at a low volume when you hit bad weather. Announcers can update you on closed roads, alternate routes, and other pertinent information.
- Use your low beams: If the weather gets foggy, make sure to use your fog lights, not your brights. This will help you see better and will prevent you from blinding other drivers. Additionally, you’ll want to stay to the far right side of the road in foggy conditions in case you accidentally start to drift toward the centerline.