Highways can be really dangerous places during the winter, even for the most experienced drivers out there, but if you respect these 10 tips, you are safe.
- Always ensure that your truck is in good condition before hitting the road
– clean the snow and the ice from the vehicle, especially from the hood, the lights and the windows
– carefully inspect the tires, the wipers, the fluids and the lights and make sure they are completely functional
– always keep at least half a tank of gasoline
- Never forget these things at home: a cloak, gloves, thick clothes, a lantern, blankets, non-perishable food, a first aid kit, salt or sand, a brush to scrub the snow off, cables, wheel chains, a mobile phone and a charger.
- Drive with care
– you can compensate for a bad traction by driving slower. Driving at a slower pace gives you a superior reaction time in case something happens on the highway ahead of you.
- Accelerate and break slowly
– avoid sudden stops or sudden take-offs. When you’re driving in slippery conditions, hit the brakes slowly, thus you avoid the risk of blocking the wheels and losing control of your vehicle.
- Keep as much space between you and other vehicles as possible
- If possible, refrain from driving in formations
- Do evasion maneuvers
– adjust your driving to the conditions of the road. Reduce the speed when you pass in front of other cars and break only when necessary.
- Grip that wheel with confidence
– sudden moves can cause the loss of control. Tighten your grip on the wheel when there’s strong wind or ice on the road. The ice pellicle makes driving a bit difficult and you need to be a master of precise movements of the wheel.
- Beware of the “black ice”
– black ice is transparent and it forms when the temperature drops close to that of freezing. In this case, it may appear as a mere puddle of water, that’s why it can easily trick you.
- Pay extra attention when driving through the mountains
– weather in the mountains can change immediately during the wintertime. Prepare for strong gusts of wind in exposed areas and watch out for the snow ploughs.
- If you start skidding: gently press the clutch, look only in your left mirror and counter-steer with fast moves to place yourself in front of the trailer.