The snow and ice has arrived in Leicestershire - and for many of us snow days at home with lots of school closures. However, if you do need to get out and about, make sure you are prepared and stay safe with our handy guide to driving in the snow:
- Ensure your windows are clean and clear, and that you have all-round visibility before you set off. Also take the time to clear snow off the roof of your car.
- When driving in snow, get your speed right – not too fast that you risk losing control, but not so slow that you risk losing momentum when it is needed
- From stationary, start gently and avoid high revs. Stay in a higher gear to avoid skidding and maximise control. If it is very slippery, in a manual car move off in a higher gear, rather than just using first.
- If you get yourself into a skid, the main thing to remember is to take your foot off the pedals and steer. Only use the brake if you cannot steer out of trouble.
- Double or even triple your normal stopping distance from the vehicle in front so you are not relying on your brakes to be able to stop; it simply may not happen!
- It’s better to think ahead as you drive to keep moving, even if it is at walking pace.
- Plan your journey around busier roads as they are more likely to have been gritted. Avoid using short cuts on minor roads – they are less likely to be cleared or treated with salt, especially country lanes and housing estates.
- Bends are a particular problem in icy conditions – slow down before you get to the bend, so that by the time you turn the steering wheel you have already lost enough speed.
- On a downhill slope get your speed low before you start the descent, and do not let it build up – it is much easier to keep it low than to try and slow down once things get slippery.
Make sure you have the following with you as well:
- Warning triangle to alert other traffic if you break down or have to stop
- Hi-Vis vests for all occupants
- First Aid Kit
- De-icer and ice scraper
- Small shovel
- Tow Rope
- Warm clothes
- Spare Rug/Blankets
- Food and drink - a thermos of soup or tea/coffee might prove vital
- Spare screenwash and engine oil
Ultimately, STAY AT HOME, if you can.