Winter Driving

glenfinnanWinter Driving on Ice

Winter is a challenging time for drivers, as the temperature is dropping here is some information we hope will help.

Ice and hail are two of the main hazards to look out for. They are the most challenging for drivers, it is easier to drive on snow than on ice.

Our free winter check is still available

How to prepare for driving on ice

  • Firstly, do you need to make the journey if you don’t consider staying home
  • Tyre grip is reduced on icy roads, braking distance far longer think of that every time you drive
  • Even if you avoid any accidents you may get stuck or breakdown, always carry a coat, suitable boots or shoes for walking in, water and non perishable snacks. Always a good idea to also carry a blanket, torch and a hat too.
  • If you’re driving to meet someone, let them know your route and when you expect to arrive. If you can no longer make it let them know. It’s easier to look for someone if you know they are missing.
  • Make sure the car’s windows and mirrors are completely clear before you set off.

How to drive on icy roads

  • Anticipation and smoothness are key for driving on icy roads.
  • Look well ahead for potential hazards keep your speed lower if you know there will be hazards
  • Accelerating, braking, steering and changing gear as smoothly as possible will always reduce the risk of a skid or issues pulling away
  • A higher gear may be more appropriate to aid grip on packed ice, if it’s spinning try a higher gear in a manual you can slip the clutch slightly to help
  • Many automatics will let you select second gear at a standstill to pull away in which is very useful on ice, some have a snow and ice setting
  • Keep your distance, braking distance can be 10 times longer so advice is keep 10 times the normal recommended gap between you and the car in front.
  • Fit winter tyres where possible
  • If you do encounter a skid, steer gently into it. So if the rear of the car is sliding to the right, steer to the right. As above, do not take your hands off the steering wheel or brake hard this will make it worse

As always if you are unsure on the forecast check the met office website