If anyone knows about winter driving and safety, it's going to be the people at SGI.
With the second October 23 snowstorm in as many years blanketing much of the province, SGI is taking the time to remind folks that the rules of the road still apply even when the lines are covered.
Winter driving can be a dangerous endeavour, even on nice days. SGI Spokesperson Michaela Solomon is extending some helpful advice on staying safe on the road with all the ice and snow.
"We wanted to remind people to use their winter driving skills," said Solomon. "The transition time from not-winter to winter, from no-snow to snow on the road, takes some getting used to. We want to remind people, to reduce your speed, give yourself some extra time to get to your destination."
Solomon strongly encourages people to always check the Highway Hotline before heading anywhere on the highway. By checking for incidents, road conditions, and delays, motorists can plan an efficient route to their destination, even if it's a little longer.
"Arriving late is never ideal," said Solomon. "But it's better than arriving injured after a collision or filing a claim after a collision."
A big point being stressed this year is to allow extra stopping distance. In the event that the brakes need to be applied with little warning, the icy roads can cause vehicles to slide much further than normal. By granting plenty of extra room to stop, you give yourself the chance to avoid rear-ending someone, sliding out of control, and safely and calmly coming to a stop.
"If the road is icy, you want to make sure you're just making slow and steady movements," said Solomon. "Clean off your windows and lights. Make sure you have visibility out of all of your windows and that your lights can be clearly seen before you head out."
Anyone with a remote start and defrost might think they are set no matter how frosty it is outside. The truth is that it's always important to make sure all the ice and snow is scraped off windows and lights. Ensuring good visibility is an important step to take in remaining safe in the winter.
Another big tip that can improve the defrost and heater is to clear the exterior heater vents. Usually located at the base of the windshield, people can clear them of snow and ice with a brush or by hand. By opening and cleaning them out, air flow improves, and the heater isn't pulling directly on snow and ice.
"Always drive with your headlights on," said Solomon. "These are all really important tips [for safe driving]."
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