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Tips for winter driving Tips for winter driving

In the winter there are frequent adverse weather conditions such as snow, ice, fog, rain and wind, which significantly affect traffic conditions. This results in greater difficulties for drivers, such as eye strain and increased stress, all of which reduces the driver's attention level. All of these inconveniences can be overcome if we always bear in mind the 2 basic rules for driving in winter: PREVENTION and PRUDENCE, which will allow us to drive in the best conditions for Road Safety this time of year.


Winter Road Safety: 2 Basic Rules = PREVENTION + PRUDENCE


PREVENTION (before the trip)

Before you leave home this time of year you should take a series of measures to prevent any foreseeable incident on the road.

  • a) Get the vehicle in good shape by performing a revision. In the winter, the vehicle and its components are subjected to severe weather conditions compared to the rest of the year, so it will be necessary to prepare for this.

    • * Check for good mechanical condition and, in particular, check the brakes
    • * Check the blades and the operation of the windshield wipers and rear window heating.
    • * Check the vehicle lighting, the fog lamps and their settings.
    • * Brake fluids, antifreeze and windshield wipers fluid.
    • * Clean the vehicle, glass, lights, fog lamps, pilot lights, mirrors and reflectors to see and be seen.
    • * Check the pressure, tread patterns and tread depths (minimum 1.6 mm) of the tires to ensure good road grip and prevent slippage.
    • * Carry essential spares such as:

      • - Spare tire with correct pressure and tools necessary for mounting it, wheel repair kit.
      • - Spare set of lights in perfect condition and tools for installing them.
      • - 2 warning triangles.
      • It is also very important to carry:
      • - Emergency flashlight, demisting clothe, ice scraper.
      • - Chains and gloves for their installation.
  • b) Plan the trip. This time of year the weather is very unpredictable, so it is necessary to carefully examine the most suitable itinerary for each situation.

    • * Get the latest traffic report:
      • Internet: www.dgt.es
      • Phone: 900.123.505
      • and get information about the condition of the highways you are going to use and possible alternative routes you are going to use and possible alternative routes in case of bad weather, or listen to news bulletins by the various radio stations around the country.
    • * Make travel plans taking into account the passengers (children, elderly persons, etc..), stops and rests, weather and itineraries.
    • * Keep the fuel tank full; this will help a great deal in any situation.
    • * Wear comfortable clothing for driving and take warm clothes or blankets in case of an emergency.


PRUDENCE (during the trip)

We can find ourselves in any weather conditions, so you have to react and act safely.

  • a) Adjust the speed and safety distance. Weather incidents can affect driving in 2 ways, simultaneously or separately:

    • - By reducing visibility.
    • - By reducing adhesion between the tire and the road.

      Therefore, in the presence of snow, ice, fog, rain and wind while:
      Reduce you speed and increase the safety distance.
  • b) Stay informed of weather conditions. Staying informed will allow us to make decisions on the most suitable route and avoid problems.
  • c) Stop off the road in extreme situations. When, due to significant rainfall or extreme weather, driving is difficult and dangerous, it is best to stop off the road in an appropriate place until conditions allow the resumption of travel. Notify people at your destination of possible delays due to adverse weather conditions.
  • d) Offer roadside help. Watch out for traffic authority, emergency and road maintenance vehicles which must be able to access any point on the road. Drivers near them must facilitate their movement.


In addition to these 2 Basic Rules, there is number of tips and specific rules for each kind of weather phenomenon: snow, ice, fog, rain and wind that could affect us on the road.


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