Snow may be uncommon in Middle Tennessee, but it happens. In fact, this winter, we’ve had 3 snow storms come through our area as of mid January. It’s always important to be prepared. Driving on ice and snow can be nerve-wracking. When a storm approaches driving may become both terrifying and dangerous. Whether you live somewhere with severe winter weather or are simply passing through, it’s always a great idea to know how to drive in the snow.
Here are 11 tips for safe driving in the snow in Tennessee:
- Maintain your vehicle: Keeping your vehicle in good working order is one of the best methods to maximize your chances of arriving safely. Getting an oil change, inspection, and tune-up before the snow falls is an excellent idea.
- Fill up: Don’t start your drive without a full tank, especially if you know you’ll be driving through bad weather. If you get stuck, you’ll be relieved to know that you’ll be warm in your vehicle.
- Invest in tires: Experts agree that snow tires are well worth the money. Even high-quality all-season tires aren’t adequate for the task. Good snow tires may substantially increase traction and improve your ability to stop and steer in the snow and ice.
- Drive slowly: Driving too fast may increase your stress level as well as your chances of getting into an accident. Slowing down can also enhance the traction of your tires on the road.
- Stay back: Increase your distance from other cars as much as possible if you find yourself in a dangerous position. One of the most effective strategies to lessen the danger of an accident is to combine staying back with slowing down. When conditions are particularly poor, experts advise a following distance of up to five to ten seconds from the next vehicle. See this great article about keeping a safe following distance while driving (click here).
- Use your headlights: In snowy conditions, using your headlights will assist others in seeing you.
- Drive smoothly: Sudden movements can cause your tires to spin out and lose traction, so when traveling in a snowfall, drive as smoothly as possible. A hilarious explanation of how you should drive in the snow can be seen in the below tweet by @Chadsu42.
If you rarely drive on snow, just pretend you’re taking your grandma to church. There’s a platter of biscuits and 2 gallons of sweet tea in glass jars in the back seat. She’s wearing a new dress and holding a crock pot full of gravy.
— Christine Sperow FOX 5 (DAWGS are 14-1💃🏾) (@ChristineOnTV) January 18, 2018
- Remain calm and alert: Turn down the music, keep your phone in the holder, and concentrate on the road.
- Increase visibility: It’s especially vital to have good visibility when driving through a storm, so make sure your wipers, defroster, and mirrors are all operating correctly and that your car is thoroughly cleared (including your headlights and taillights) before you get behind the wheel.
- Learn how to brake: It’s natural to want to slam on the brakes but resist the urge. This increases your chances of losing control of the car. Instead, gradually apply the brake after decelerating or taking your foot off the gas. Push the brake pedal down and hold it solid to activate your anti-lock braking system (ABS). Gently pump the brake pedal if your vehicle does not have anti-lock brakes.
- Learn how to steer in a slide: If you ever slide while driving, whether that happens on snow, ice, or even on wet roads, it’s important to remember several basic points:
- Don’t hit your brakes.
- Always steer in the direction that you want your vehicle to go.
- Don’t panic and don’t overcorrect.
See this great article and accompanying video about icy roads and how to correct a slide (click here).
In conclusion, we recommend that you drive carefully and attempt to be alert while on the road. As we head out on the busy roads, always keep the safety of you and your passengers the top priority. Remember to have both hands on the steering wheel and remain distraction-free at all times. We hope you enjoyed reading these 11 tips for safe driving in snow in Tennessee.
We wish you safe travels!
Because we care…
Middle Tennessee Accident Attorneys