This is how you stay safe driving in winter conditions
Oxfordshire County Council’s Fire and Rescue Service is urging drivers to take extra care as winter draws in and temperatures drop. Winter weather and longer periods of darkness make driving much more hazardous. Ice, snow, heavy rain and fog significantly increase the risks on road journeys. That’s why it’s so crucial to be prepared:
Andy Ford, Road Safety Manager, Oxfordshire County Council's Fire & Rescue Service, said: “Reduced visibility and slippery road surfaces make winter driving more difficult. We would like to encourage drivers to adjust to road conditions, whether it’s frost, ice, fog, heavy rain or a low winter sun, please slow down and allow yourself time to react. It’s not just about preparing yourself but your vehicle: Checking your tyres and lights, keeping a kit with ice scraper, de-icer, hazard warning triangle, torch and high visibility jacket in your vehicle”.
Top tips for winter journeys
- Check the weather before setting off. Remember road surfaces are a couple of degrees colder than air temperature and untreated roads could still be icy even if your car isn’t
- Completely clear all your windows and mirrors of ice and make sure all of your windows are demisted and not just a small area
- Leave plenty of space between you and the car in front. It can take twice as long to stop on wet roads and ten times longer to stop in icy ones.
- Check your tyres – ACT - Air pressure, Condition and Tread depth at least once a month. In rain, ice and heavy snow the more grip you have the better.
- Ensure your lights are clean and working
- Ensure your front and rear wipers are in good condition and the washer bottle is full with water and screen wash
- Check that your battery is fully charged
- If the weather is really bad you may want to keep an extra blanket, water, shovel and wellington boots in your car
- Don’t forget your kit: ice scraper, de-icer, hazard warning triangle, torch, high visibility jacket and blanket
Have a safe journey
For further fire and road safety advice, visit the Safe Journey pages on the www.365alive.co.uk website